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.
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.
CW Briggs is a veteran insurance investigator, with many successes. Betty Ann Fitzgerald is a new employee in the company he works for, with the task of reorganizing the office. They don't like each other - or at least that's what they think. During a night out with the rest of the office employees, they go to watch Voltan, a magician who secretly hypnotizes both of them, in order to use them for his dirty schemes. The next evening already, Briggs makes his first robbery, and when he wakes up in the morning he has no memory of it. Things get really complicated when he starts investigating the case. Will he be able to uncover... himself? Written by
Chris Makrozahopoulos <email@example.com>
Woody Allen is very secretive with his scripts when he is working. Helen Hunt was allowed to read the entire script when she was offered the part, but she had to read it in one sitting and then give it back to the courier who was waiting to take it back. See more »
The Baldwin grand piano in the Rainbow Room has the modern logo, not the one the company used in the 1940s. See more »
I may be a scummy vermin but I'm an honest scummy vermin.
See more »
Would that all of us could have the power of Woody Allen. Forget the Jade Scorpion that could give you riches, power and enormous control over your friends or better, your enemies. Woody has beautiful starlets (Charize Theron), maturing Dames (Helen Hunt) and former showgirls (Elizabeth Berkley) willing to drop their commitments to make far more just to appear in this master's film. Then of course there's the opportunity to play out Woody's fantasies. How we suffer for our art.
This formulaic Allen comedy has more vintage standup lines than three of his last offerings. Woody why have you waited so long? Close your eyes and imagine the skinny, self-conscious former writer delivering subtle self-deprecation. Now you've got it.
Take me back to the '40's New York, Big Band, black coupes, fedoras and a pre-politically-correct era allowing us to wisecrack, lust and gaze without sanction. I think Mr. Allen pines for this freedom from humorless judgment and liberation from censors on either side of the political spectrum. But I project.
CW Biggs and Miss Betty Ann Fitzgerald have a serious love-to-hate relationship. They're natural enemies as the intelligent, progressive, scientific-management insultant vs. practical, intuitive, seat-of the pants working stiff who's success taunts Betty Ann. Woody delivers his lines flawlessly and Ms. Hunt deserves credit for a stretch performance. Her earlier award winning jobs prepared her well for the non-stop repartee demanded by the script.
I'm reminded of a classic bit by Monty Python of the chartered accountant wanting to be a lion tamer. What's more exciting than the life of an insurance investigator? (remember Memento?) Next we'll see the thrilling escapades of a career counselor. What is Hollywood projecting?
Are there any other characters of note? There's the usual collection of performers who feed Woody and his lover/hater set-up lines to build the plot. Dan Ackroyd is at his sleazy best and Wallace Shawn inspires sympathy, Charlize Theron is believable and David Ogden Stiers mesmerizes us. But why did we really spend our 10 bucks and two hours?
This film may amuse, annoy or revive your spirits. The old Woody is back. If it took a scorpion bite, it was worth it. There's certain energy to his films - nervous energy and we all could use another dose.
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