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Melinda and Melinda (2004)

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Two alternating stories, one comedy and the other tragedy, about Melinda's attempts to straighten out her life.

Director:

Woody Allen

Writer:

Woody Allen

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Wallace Shawn ... Sy
Neil Pepe Neil Pepe ... Al
Stephanie Roth Haberle ... Louise
Larry Pine ... Max
Radha Mitchell ... Melinda Robicheaux
Michael J. Farina ... Man with Dog
Jonny Lee Miller ... Lee
Chloë Sevigny ... Laurel
Matt Servitto ... Jack Oliver
Arija Bareikis ... Sally Oliver
Brooke Smith ... Cassie
Zak Orth ... Peter
Will Ferrell ... Hobie
Andy Borowitz ... Doug
Amanda Peet ... Susan
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Storyline

Al, Louise, Max and Sy - four literary types who work in the theater business - are discussing what they believe to be the real life truths underlying their work, Max who writes primarily tragic plays, and Sy who writes primarily comic plays. Al proceeds to tell them a real story of a troubled woman named Melinda Robicheaux showing up unexpectedly at a door in the middle of an important business dinner party. Melinda long ago left her physician husband to embark on a relationship with who she initially believed to be the man of her dreams, which ended up not being the case. Melinda tries to put her life back together with the help of select people at the dinner party, some who have their own ulterior motives. Melinda's appearance also opens up the cracks existing in the marriage of one of the couples at the dinner party, while it leads to the dissolution of a friendship that has existed since college. With this basic outline of a story, Max and Sy try to make their point of life being... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Life can be a comedy or a tragedy, it all depends on how you look at it. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for adult situations involving sexuality, and some substance material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 April 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Melinda & Melinda See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$74,238, 20 March 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,825,351, 19 June 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital (Mono)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ellis (Chiwetel Ejiofor) mentioned that his opera has been staged at the Santa Fe Opera in New Mexico. See more »

Goofs

When Melinda, Walt and Hobie are watching the first race at the race track, Walt says, "No! You did not bet on Bedazzler! That's a nine-to-one horse!" There then follows a scene of Melinda and Hobie talking, following by another scene of them watching a horse race with Walt, in which the dialogue track has been removed from underneath the musical score. However, if you look at Walt's lips during this second scene, he is clearly saying, once again, "No! You did not bet on Bedazzler! That's a nine-to-one horse!" See more »

Quotes

Susan: I wish we could afford a place in the Hamptons. Everybody who's anybody has one.
Hobie: Yeah, but if you're somebody who's nobody, it's no fun to be around anybody who's everybody.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Close Encounters with Vilmos Zsigmond (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Will You Still Be Mine
(1941)
Music by Matt Dennis
Lyrics by Tom Adair
Performed by Erroll Garner
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I predict you won't be miserable.
21 March 2005 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

Manhattan still drives Woody Allen crazy: Urbanites are prey to ambition and lust, pride and diffidence and even sound like Woody with their halting sentences, paranoid affectations, and occasionally witty lines tossed off like the dregs of their grande lattes. It's a petting zoo of needy moderns who most of all want to find love, which eludes them right up to the last cliffhanging moment.

Alvy Singer and Annie Hall are the best known of Allen's angst-ridden city dwellers, but the new Woodies are every bit as screwed up if not more knowing about the quagmires their marriages and professions have become. The setup is twin parallel stories starting from the same incident reflecting separately the tragic and the comic possibilities.

It all begins with a discussion at a restaurant table among four sophisticates about life being either tragic or comic. Sy (Wallace Shawn), a comedy writer, argues that people need laughter to overcome life's essential pain (difficult to separate Shawn from the memory of his discussion in "My Dinner with Andre"). Max (Larry Pine) says that life is absurd and therefore tragic. So each tells the same story differently about an uninvited guest, one story a romantic comedy, the other a tragic tale of a desperate loner.

Will Farrell as a neurotic husband does the best fax Allen yet in his films. His lines are vintage Woody, tossed-off self-deprecation with a worldly wise guy subtext. One of the best lines comes from Susan (Amanda Peet), a director, who discloses the title of her newest film, "The Castration Sonata," putting "male sexuality in perspective." The Woodman returns in fine form to take on Aristotle and try to fulfill his own hope over a quarter century ago when he said, "If my film makes one more person miserable, I'll feel I've done my job." His tragedy has such ample comedy, I predict you won't be miserable.


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