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.
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.
Holden and Skylar are in love with each other. Skylar lives with a large and extended family on Manhattan. Her parents, Bob and Steffi have been married to each other for many years. Joe, a friend of theirs, who has a daughter, DJ, with Steffi. After yet another relationship, Joe is alone again. He flees to Venice, and meets Von, and makes her believe that he is the man of her dreams. However, their happiness is fake all the way, and she returns to her previous husband. Steffi spends her time with charity work, and manages to break up Skylars and Holdens relation when she introduces Skylar to a released jailbird, Charles Ferry. Written by
In the Harry Winston dance sequence, Edward Norton's dancing resembles that of Groucho Marx in Animal Crackers, the character celebrated later in this film, when they perform Hooray for Captain Spaulding in French. See more »
The camera and Woody Allen are reflected in a mirror during the dance scene in the jewelry store. See more »
Frieda, this pasta doesn't have any sauce
It's Bavarian pasta, it doesn't need sauce. The Italians need sauce. The Italians were weak!
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Sweet, light weight musical - enjoy it (it's later than you think!)
In an old fashioned musical, the loves and losses of an extended upper-class family in Manhattan are followed in song from NY to Paris and Venice.
The company logo comes onscreen followed closely by the white title on a black background. Seconds later we are into the first song as two young lovers walk in the park - and it's not until 100 minutes later that it lets you go again. The plot is nothing more than lots of strands of love and loss tied together by family connections. None of the stories really have any great significance but are backed up by wit and some charming song and dance numbers. This is whimsy at it's very best.
It feels like Woody Allen has really relaxed and is making films that hark back to an older age - indeed his usual style is tuned down a little to make it more accessible and more enjoyable. He has several black characters, his humour is witty but less cruel than usual and his narrative is driven by a teenage girl rather than himself. It feels so free of his usual cynicism that it adds to the weightless charm it already has. He handles the song and dance scene with such vigour and such imagination that you find yourself wondering why he hasn't done a musical before.
The superb cast all catch the charm and light feel perfectly. Not all of them are great singers but they all do well and give their best (except Barrymore who refused and was dubbed). The usual stars are complimented by plenty of well known faces - Alda, Goldie Hawn, Lucas Haas, Portman, Tim Roth, Roberts and of course the wonderful Edward Norton.
This is 100 minutes of lightweight wonder. It has no rough edges, no difficult issues, no cruel jokes and very little swearing. Only the coldest heart could fail to warm to this little charmer.
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