MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 43 this week

Mighty Aphrodite (1995)

7.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.1/10 from 26,725 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 85 user | 59 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

When he discovers his adopted son is a genius, a New York sportswriter seeks out the boy's birth mother: a prostitute.

Director:

Writer:

Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 29 titles
created 06 Dec 2010
 
a list of 29 titles
created 19 Mar 2011
 
a list of 32 titles
created 21 Mar 2013
 
a list of 37 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 45 titles
created 5 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Mighty Aphrodite (1995)

Mighty Aphrodite (1995) on IMDb 7.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Mighty Aphrodite.

User Polls

Won 1 Oscar. Another 14 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A loser of a crook and his wife strike it rich when a botched bank job's cover business becomes a spectacular success.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Tracey Ullman, Hugh Grant
Alice (1990)
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A spoiled Manhattan housewife re-evaluates her life after visiting a Chinatown healer.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Mia Farrow, William Hurt, Joe Mantegna
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A middle-aged couple suspects foul play when their neighbor's wife suddenly drops dead.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Jerry Adler
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1920s New York, a struggling playwright is forced to cast a mobster's talentless girlfriend in his latest drama in order to get it produced.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: John Cusack, Dianne Wiest, Jennifer Tilly
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

When their best friends announce that they're separating, a professor and his wife discover the faults in their marriage.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Mia Farrow, Sydney Pollack
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A director is forced to work with his ex-wife, who left him for the boss of the studio bankrolling his new film. But the night before the first day of shooting, he develops a case of psychosomatic blindness.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Téa Leoni, Bob Dorian
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Suffering from writer's block and eagerly awaiting his writing award, Harry Block remembers events from his past and scenes from his best-selling books as characters, real and fictional, come back to haunt him.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Judy Davis, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A New York girl sets her father up with a beautiful woman in a shaky marriage while her half sister gets engaged.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Goldie Hawn, Julia Roberts
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An insurance investigator and an efficency expert who hate each other are both hypnotized by a crooked hypnotist with a jade scorpion into stealing jewels.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Greg Stebner, Woody Allen, John Tormey
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In 1930s New Jersey, a movie character walks off the screen and into the real world.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Mia Farrow, Jeff Daniels, Danny Aiello
Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In the 1930s, fictional jazz guitarist Emmet Ray idolizes Django Reinhardt, faces gangsters and falls in love with a mute.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Sean Penn, Samantha Morton, Woody Allen
Anything Else (2003)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A contemporary romantic comedy set in New York city about the relationship between an older guy and his younger protege. The older guy guides the younger through a messy and hilarious love story.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Jason Biggs, Christina Ricci
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Pamela Blair ...
Rene Ceballos ...
Greek Chorus (as René Ceballos)
Elie Chaib ...
George De La Pena ...
Joanne DiMauro ...
...
...
Greek Chorus (as Marianne Filali)
Angelo Fraboni ...
Scott Fowler ...
Seth Gertsacov ...
Patti Karr ...
Fred Mann III ...
John Mineo ...
Christopher Nelson ...
Valda Setterfield ...
Edit

Storyline

Lenny and Amanda have an adopted son Max who turns out to be brilliant. Lenny becomes obsessed with finding Max's real parents because he believes that they too must be brilliant. When he finds that Linda Ash is Max' real mother, Lenny is disappointed. Linda is a prostitute and porn star. On top of that, she is quite possibly the dumbest person Lenny has ever met. Interwoven is a Greek chorus linking the story with the story of Oedipus. Written by Jason Ihle <jrihl@conncoll.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The new comedy from Woody Allen


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sex-related material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 January 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Poderosa Afrodita  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$6,700,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Mono)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

When Lenny and Linda are at the restaurant we see several framed photos of celebrities on the wall nearby. Some of the celebrities featured are actors Robert De Niro (a still photo from Raging Bull), Leonard Nimoy, Brooke Shields, James Garner and musician Chuck Mangione. See more »

Goofs

The scene at the school where Lenny and Amanda consider sending their child was shot at the City & Country School in New York, a world-famous progressive K-8 school in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan. During their visit, a school administrator mentions that the child's test scores are acceptable. In real life, however, the school does not use standardized-test scores when considering prospective students. See more »

Quotes

Lenny Weinrib: I'm completely superfluous.
Kevin: Oh, you don't feel good?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Greek Chorus does the "When You're Smiling (The Whole World Smiles At You)" song-and-dance production number over half the credits. See more »

Connections

References The Philadelphia Story (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Li'l Darlin'
(1957)
Written by Neal Hefti
Performed by Count Basie and His Orchestra (as "The Count Basie Orchestra")
Courtesy of Blue Note Records, a Division of Capitol Records, Inc.
Under license from Cema Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Mighty Aphrodite
22 March 2000 | by (Seattle) – See all my reviews

Hot on the high-heels of "Showgirls" comes Woody Allen's latest film, "Mighty Aphrodite," named after the Greek goddess of love, another American film trying to interrogate the questionable mentality and dubious spirituality of the skin trade. A lot will probably be made of the fact that, not satisfied with merely pointing out classical references in his text, Allen decided to have a whole Greek Chorus (consisting of F. Murray Abraham, Olympia Dukakis, David Ogden Stiers and Jack Warden) filmed in an ancient outdoor amphitheater in Taormina, Italy (wearing masks, no less, in a nod to classical authenticity) and genuflect on the alter of genuine myth to underscore the tragic and comedic parts of his film. It doesn't matter how well- versed you are in the Greeks, you'll be able to enjoy what Allen has done with his approach, which is a very refreshing idea for film (bringing it all back home) and also a great surreal scaffold for the situation he presents. Purists be warned. Allen (Now 60 years old, but trying to play his role like he's not a day over 40) and Helena Bonham- Carter (29 years old) are happily married when one day Bonham-Carter's biological clock goes off and she wants to have a baby immediately. Allen hesitates so much at the thought of pregnancy that Bonham- Carter, who really can't wait, says, "fine, let's adopt, then," which of course hits the raw nerve of Allen's masculinity as he defends his genes against the idea of having someone else's child join their family.

Allen's character in this film is a sportswriter, adding another "tough" layer to his never-ending quiche of a meditation/angst-ridden search for definitive masculinity. Every scene where Allen suffers some sort of gender-related torment is set in a male arena: When he's fighting on the phone with Bonham-Carter about the decision to adopt, the backdrop is a boxing club with every ring filled with sparring partners. Another scene where he contemplates his situation shows him pacing back and forth on the sidelines watching the New York Giants scrimmage in the Meadowlands.

The couple finally decide to adopt a boy, and in one scene in particular I realized just how much Allen is stuck in a zeitgeist rut. In their uptown apartment Allen and Bonham-Carter bandy names back and forth for the new little tike as Allen, forever the cultural namedropper, comes up with the monikers of all of his heroes: Django, Groucho, Thelonius. Bonham-Carter is oblivious to his suggestions as she coddles the baby and suddenly you realize that Allen should have made this film years ago, because the conversation sounds like something that was written for what would have been the sequel to "Annie Hall." Now that he's twenty years removed from the carefree days of dynamic dialogue with Diane Keaton and the spark she brought as Allen's main female foil, Bonham-Carter seems unsure of herself, treating Allen as obligatorily as a father or uncle rather than her husband. Enter the plot.

Bonham-Carter is being chased by Peter Weller (48 years old), a seductively sleazy art gallery owner, which sends Allen's mid-life crisis into an absolute tailspin as he begins wondering if he's really happy with his wife, and as he's looking at his newly adopted "son" he wonders aloud what the mother of his adopted child is like. Enter Cassandra and...you get the picture.

One of the things I realized while watching "Mighty Aphrodite" is that Allen has spent a good portion of his career in film flagellating himself for not being the American Ingmar Bergman, when all the time he should have been luxuriating in the fact that he's the American Federico Fellini: He has an uncanny sense for seeking out ripe minor actors, ready to be picked, and then letting them find the aspect of the character they're playing that makes them Characters rather than just parts played by actors. Even though I feel as if Bonham-Carter is not given nearly enough room to fully flesh out her character (which is a shame for an actress of her caliber), the film is really about Linda, the real mother of Allen and Bonham-Carter's adopted child, who turns out to be a ditzy porn star overflowing with spunk and zeal.

Linda, played by Mira Sorvino (Quiz Show, Barcelona), Paul Sorvino's daughter, steals the film. Allen has tempted fate and defied the Greek Chorus' warnings by seeking out Linda, but since she's in the skin trade he arranges to meet her at her apartment in the guise of being merely a "john." When Allen's reticence at wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am sex gets the better of him, he finally shows the age and mindset that he really is and turns into a grandfather before your very eyes.

But, Linda is a ditz first and a hooker second in that she understands her victimization but also begins to realize that her situation is only as hopeless as her innate tenacity is boundless. In the most delicate scene in the film, and maybe the most poignant scene I've seen all year, Sorvino is in her bathtub-sized kitchen trying to defend her life to Allen, and as she keeps talking she realizes her own complicity until she finally mentions that she even had a baby once that she gave up for adoption. Allen gives her this scene by not entering the frame for what seems like a full minute. The direction in this scene alone, in Linda's chessily decorated flat complete with clocks of pigs in heat, shows just how gifted Allen is at being able to take an obscure actress, give her a two-dimensional role and have her find the heart and soul of the film on her own.

Leave it to Woody Allen to deliver a film that is fascinating on many levels and is as beautifully structured as anything you're likely to see all year. I don't believe it's Best Picture material, but it does show a very strong return to form for Allen, no matter how unsure he is of reentering the war between the sexes.


37 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
mighty sorvino In_Fockin_Bruges
An Important Film ab-gangulee-00
Mira's voice tynabop
A wonderful theme of friendship ChorusL106
Blind Tiresias -- and the Screen Play gelman@attglobal.net
worst quality WA DVD yet aev1982
Discuss Mighty Aphrodite (1995) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page