Cecilia is a waitress in New Jersey during the Depression and is searching for an escape from her dreary life. Tom Baxter is a dashing young archaeologist in the film "The Purple Rose of Cairo." After losing her job Cecilia goes to see the film in hopes of raising her spirits. Much to her surprise Tom Baxter walks off the screen and into her life. There's only one problem..Tom isn't real. Meanwhile Hollywood is up in arms when they dicover that other Tom Baxters are trying to leave the screen in other theatres. Will Tom ever return and finish the film or will he decide to stay in the real world?Written by
Ricky Darbonne <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Part of the movie is in black-and-white, which is all the scenes which feature the film within a film, "The Purple Rose of Cairo". The film is one of a number of pictures which were filmed in black-and-white by director Woody Allen during his immediate post-Annie Hall (1977) period between the late 1970s and early-mid 1980s. The films also include Manhattan (1979), Stardust Memories (1980), Zelig (1983) (also in color) and Broadway Danny Rose (1984). After The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Allen would then not make another b&w film for about another six years, until Shadows and Fog (1991) in 1991. See more »
Although the film is set in 1935, the "inner" film has no specific date so the reference to the Copacobana Club, which opened in 1940, could simply be forward thinking by the director of the inner film. Also Tom remarks in New York that 24 hours previously he was in Egypt. It would be many years after 1935 that he could have done that journey so quickly by air. See more »
There was a time when words could not be spoken out loud and black-and-white cinematography overshadowed everythinf colour. I speak, of course, about the silent era of filmmaking, back when a still-young Buster Keaton released the 45 minutes-long masterpiece entitled "Sherlock, Jr."
Keaton's use of illusions and smart editing mesmerised the audiences, creating one of the most important short-films ever made. Woody Allen, one of the most significant filmmakers of all-time, made his own version of "Sherlock, Jr." back in 1985: The Purple Rose Of Cairo.
"The Purple Rose Of Cairo" is not only a tribute given to the works of Buster Keaton but also to the art of filmmaking itself. Woody Allen is never shown on the screen in this magical piece of cinema, but we can feel his presence everywhere. It's within the story, the script or, better said, the reel. We simply know he's there, even though we can't see him.
The plot is simple: an everyday woman escapes everyday problems (including a not-so-caring husband played by Danny Aiello) by going to the cinema. She already watched "The Purple Rose of Cairo" for about 4 times, but that doesn't stop her from watching it the 5th time when one of the characters (Tom Baxter, played by Jeff Daniels) is so impressed by how much she likes the movie that he jumps off the screen and runs away with her out of the cinema. Things go a little crazy of course, no story that plays with reality is simple. But what Woody Allen tries to tell us is that fantasy is just as important as reality itself, and it can help us remain sane. How many times have you said that one single book, film, or even song saved your day? That's the power fantasy has on us.
"The Purple Rose Of Cairo" is probably on of the most delightful films a cinephile could ever watch. It's beautifully crafted, funny, romantic and it has a lovely cast. It's not only the "Sullivan's Travells" of the 80's and Woody Allen's "Sherlock, Jr.", it represents the reason why we watch films and when you'll get to the final scene, you'll know what I mean.
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