Iconic writer, director, actor, comedian and musician Woody Allen allowed his life and creative process to be documented on-camera for the first time. With this unprecedented access, Emmy-winning, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Robert B. Weide followed the notoriously private film legend over a year and a half to create the ultimate film biography. "Woody Allen: A Documentary" chronicles Allen's career - from teen writer to Sid Caesar's TV scribe, from stand-up comedian to award-winning writer-director averaging one film-per-year for more than 40 years. Exploring Allen's writing habits, casting, directing, and relationship with his actors first-hand, new interviews with A-listers, writing partners, family and friends provide insight and backstory to the usually inscrutable filmmaker.Written by
An iconic director/writer/actor shares his creative process
It is one of the few documentaries that I watch for the second time. I did that because a) Woody is really funny and I cannot get enough b) He speaks so fast that I have to go again and munch on what he really says. And I am glad I did!
It is such a pleasure to see how Woody evolved from a timid teenager to a prolific screen writer/director/actor who never seems to run out of ideas and energy. Woody was positioned like a friend taking you to where he grew up and where he was bullied and how he came up with all his gags. Then we are shown him performing the saxophone. What a versatile artist!
It was fascinating seeing how he has been using the same manual typewriter since he was 17. Excellent editing in showing us how he stores and retrieves his ideas and how he manually cut and paste his writing.
Other than letting the director speak about himself and showing us around, we also see how other actresses/actors and his family talk about him. We also have a little glimpse of how they interact on the set, not to mention various clips of his signature movies. Woody seems to have this talent of letting actresses relax and blossom under his direction, which he encourages a lot of empowerment thus ownership. It must be rewarding and satisfying working with him.
The only shortcoming of this production, if I may say, is the absence of Mia Farrow who obviously plays an important role in his life and his movies. Otherwise, it was such a pleasure getting a closer and personal look at this important icon of our era.
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