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Manhattan (1979)

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3:15 | Trailer
The life of a divorced television writer dating a teenage girl is further complicated when he falls in love with his best friend's mistress.

Director:

Woody Allen
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Popularity
3,857 ( 495)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 15 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Woody Allen ... Isaac
Diane Keaton ... Mary
Michael Murphy ... Yale
Mariel Hemingway ... Tracy
Meryl Streep ... Jill
Anne Byrne Hoffman ... Emily (as Anne Byrne)
Karen Ludwig ... Connie
Michael O'Donoghue ... Dennis
Victor Truro Victor Truro ... Party Guest
Tisa Farrow ... Party Guest
Helen Hanft ... Party Guest
Bella Abzug Bella Abzug ... Guest of Honor
Gary Weis Gary Weis ... Television Director
Kenny Vance Kenny Vance ... Television Producer
Charles Levin ... Television Actor #1
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Storyline

Forty-two year old Isaac Davis has a romanticized view of his hometown, New York City, most specifically Manhattan, as channeled through the lead character in the first book he is writing, despite his own Manhattan-based life being more of a tragicomedy. He has just quit his job as a hack writer for a bad television comedy, he, beyond the ten second rush of endorphins during the actual act of quitting, now regretting the decision, especially as he isn't sure he can live off his book writing career. He is paying two alimonies, his second ex-wife, Jill Davis, a lesbian, who is writing her own tell-all book of their acrimonious split. The one somewhat positive aspect of his life is that he is dating a young woman named Tracy, although she is only seventeen and still in high school. Largely because of their differences a big part of which is due to their ages, he does not see a long term future with her. His life has the potential to be even more tragicomical when he meets journalist Mary... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Woody Allen's New Comedy Hit

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Manhattan See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$485,734, 29 April 1979

Gross USA:

$39,946,780

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,176,876
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Isaac lists Frank Sinatra as one of his reasons to live. Woody Allen had a decade long relationship with Sinatra's ex-wife Mia Farrow two years after this film. See more »

Goofs

In the first scene at Elaine's, as Isaac is beginning to say something, two people (presumably customers of the restaurant, as it was running while they were shooting) walk in front of the camera. Isaac laughs, and quickly recovers with an impromptu remark about how his girlfriend has to go and do homework. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[music: the opening of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. Voiceover]
Isaac Davis: Chapter One. He adored New York City. He idolized it all out of proportion. Eh uh, no, make that he, he romanticized it all out of proportion. Better. To him, no matter what the season was, this was still a town that existed in black and white and pulsated to the great tunes of George Gershwin. Uh, no, let me start this over.
Isaac Davis: Chapter One: He was too romantic about Manhattan, as he was about everything else. He thrived on...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

One of the very few Woody Allen films to not have traditional opening credits, save the production company bumper (United Artists), and the film title MANHATTAN is seen as a long vertical flashing bright neon sign, located on the side of a New York City building, and is seen for under seven seconds just before Woody Allen narrates his first line. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Lisa with an "S" (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Land of the Gay Caballero
(1930)
Music by George Gershwin
Performed by New York Philharmonic (as The New York Philharmonic)
Music director: Zubin Mehta
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Woody's masterpiece; simple as that.
19 May 2005 | by adzrussellSee all my reviews

I often debate with myself which of Woody Allen's films is his best and the debate invariably comes down to a choice between this, and Annie Hall, with Manhattan coming out on top. Although Annie Hall is a funnier film, and perhaps a lighter and more accessible film (although Manhattan is by no means dark), and perhaps even a more celebrated film, for me Manhattan in the quintessential Allen movie. All the elements are present; Allen's neurotic New Yorker, all intellectual angst; the romanticised Big Apple, swaying to the sounds of George Gershwin, never having looked better than in Gordon Willis' black and white photography; the humorous deconstruction of adult relationships. The film centres around Allen's relationship with the seventeen year old Tracy, which, thanks to a sweet performance by Mariel Hemingway, doesn't come across as inappropriate as it sounds. Keaton is excellent as always as the yin to Allen's yang, and there is good support from Michael Murphy and Meryl Streep.

I can understand why Woody Allen is an acquired taste, but what I would say to those who question the man's genius is this; "you've gotta learn to have a little faith in people".


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