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.
Val Waxman is a film director who was once big in the 1970's and 1980's, but has now has been reduced to directing TV commercials. Finally, he gets an offer to make a big film. But, disaster strikes, when Val goes temporarily blind, due to paranoia. So, he and a few friends, try to cover up his disability, without the studio executives or the producers knowing that he is directing the film blind.Written by
I liked when Woody Allen went back to comedy and starred in his own films again during this period. He started showing his age in the 00's, but in this film he's still a lot of fun and capable of being a physical comic. It's a story about a real down on his luck has-been of a director (Allen) who's so desperate that he's reduced to filming commercials in Canada. So he has no choice but to accept an offer to direct a big movie that could put him back on top - the problem is, the two producers are his ex-wife (Tea Leoni) and her new fiancé who stole her from Allen (Treat Williams). Right before production all the stress gets to Woody and he experiences psychosomatic blindness and has to direct the whole movie without being able to see. He can't blow this important opportunity and has to fake his way through without letting anyone but his trustworthy agent and his Asian cameraman's interpreter know what's happening.
This is a sure-fire recipe for laughs, and it mostly delivers. Tea Leoni is perfect for the role of Woody's long-suffering ex who's stuck working with him again under such touchy circumstances. I also enjoy Mark Rydell as his dedicated agent and mentor. Debra Messing plays another in a long line of ditzy young girlfriends who can't seem to resist shacking up with the 66-year-old Allen. The one flaw is that the movie goes on a tad long, and maybe the gag wears thin by the home stretch. *** out of ****
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