171 user 328 critic

Café Society (2016)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 5 August 2016 (USA)
1:51 | Trailer

Watch Now

With Prime Video

In the 1930s, a Bronx native moves to Hollywood and falls in love with a young woman who is seeing a married man.


Woody Allen


Woody Allen
2,559 ( 308)
7 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A romantic comedy about an Englishman brought in to help unmask a possible swindle. Personal and professional complications ensue.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Colin Firth, Emma Stone, Marcia Gay Harden
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A tormented philosophy professor finds a will to live when he commits an existential act.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, Emma Stone, Parker Posey
Comedy | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The lives of some visitors and residents of Rome and the romances, adventures and predicaments they get into.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Penélope Cruz, Jesse Eisenberg
Blue Jasmine (2013)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A New York socialite, deeply troubled and in denial, arrives in San Francisco to impose upon her sister. She looks a million, but isn't bringing money, peace, or love...

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin, Peter Sarsgaard
Wonder Wheel (2017)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

On Coney Island in the 1950s, a lifeguard tells the story of a middle-aged carousel operator, his beleaguered wife, and the visitor who turns their lives upside-down.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Justin Timberlake, Juno Temple, Robert C. Kirk
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

While on a trip to Paris with his fiancée's family, a nostalgic screenwriter finds himself mysteriously going back to the 1920s everyday at midnight.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Sally's (Naomi Watts') parents' marriage breaks up when her father undergoes a mid-life crisis and impulsively weds a prostitute. Meanwhile, Sally's own marriage also begins to disintegrate.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Naomi Watts, Josh Brolin
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Two girlfriends on a summer holiday in Spain become enamored with the same painter, unaware that his ex-wife, with whom he has a tempestuous relationship, is about to re-enter the picture.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Rebecca Hall, Scarlett Johansson, Javier Bardem
Scoop (2006)
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An American journalism student in London scoops a big story, and begins an affair with an aristocrat as the incident unfurls.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Scarlett Johansson, Hugh Jackman, Jim Dunk
Match Point (2005)
Drama | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

At a turning point in his life, a former tennis pro falls for an actress who happens to be dating his friend and soon-to-be brother-in-law.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Scarlett Johansson, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Emily Mortimer
Manhattan (1979)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

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
Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Mariel Hemingway
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A middle-aged, misanthropic divorcée from New York City surprisingly enters a fulfilling, Pygmalion-type relationship with a much younger, unsophisticated Southern girl.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Evan Rachel Wood, Larry David, Henry Cavill


Cast overview, first billed only:
Steve Carell ... Phil Stern
Sheryl Lee ... Karen Stern
Todd Weeks ... Oscar
Paul Schackman ... Al
Jodi Carlisle ... Maid
Jeannie Berlin ... Rose
Ken Stott ... Marty
Richard Portnow ... Walt
Jesse Eisenberg ... Bobby
Sari Lennick ... Evelyn
Stephen Kunken ... Leonard
Laurel Griggs Laurel Griggs ... Evelyn's Daughter
Corey Stoll ... Ben
Saul Stein ... Ben's Hood
Gabriel Millman Gabriel Millman ... Ben's Hood


In 1930's Hollywood, the powerful agent, Phil Stern, is attending a party and receives a phone call from his sister living in New York. She asks for a job for her son and Phil's nephew, Bobby, who decided to move to Hollywood. Three weeks later Phil schedules a meeting with Bobby and decides to help him. He asks his secretary Veronica "Vonnie" to hang around with Bobby, showing him the touristic places. Bobby immediately falls in love with Vonnie, but she tells that she has a boyfriend, a journalist that travels most of the time. However, Vonnie's boyfriend is indeed a married man that is also in love with her and soon she has to make a choice between her two loves. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Anyone who is anyone will be seen at Café Society.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violence, a drug reference, suggestive material and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Hebrew

Release Date:

5 August 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Café Society See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »


Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$359,289, 17 July 2016, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$11,103,205, 14 October 2016

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$34,314,223, 14 October 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



Color (ACES)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


"Cafe Society" was a phrase coined by Maury Henry Biddle Paul in 1915 to describe the "beautiful people" who socialized and threw parties in the high profile cafés and restaurants in New York, Paris, and London. See more »


When Vonnie leaves the Castle Green apartment building, a National Register of Historic Places plaque is visible behind the door. The building was added to the NRHP in 1982. See more »


Bobby: [from trailer] Life is a comedy written by a sadistic comedy writer.
See more »


References The 400 Blows (1959) See more »


There's a Small Hotel
Composed by Richard Rodgers & Lorenz Hart
Performed by Vince Giordano and The Nighthawks
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

a light-sadistic comedy, you could say
23 July 2016 | by Quinoa1984See all my reviews

It's a given by this point but after how many dozens of Woody Allen films there is a relative tier system, the 'major' and 'minor' works by a man who has written/directed so many that some almost argue are too many in number. In this sliding scale, Cafe Society is... a very good minor work. It's not necessarily very 'major', or is it particularly underrated in the scope of the critics - it carries a 75% rating on RT which is significantly higher than last year's actually underrated Irrational Man - but within the sandbox that he works in, he does what he does and it's funny and light and even just a touch affecting. Not to 'Manhattan' levels surely, but close.

It's a story of Hollywood and (in some smaller part) gangsters, glamour and romance, and the romance part is given the most attention as this is basically a light romantic comedy with some more thoughtful elements. Nothing is especially dark here in the story of Bobby Dorfman (Eisenberg, who seems like he was specially created from Woody Allen Chia-Pet seeds in a lab to be the Woody-esque lead in a Woody Allen movie), who comes to Hollywood in the 'Golden' age of the 30's to get work from his uncle Phil (Carrell), and meets his secretary Vonnie (Kristen Stewart, making it the third time this screen couple's together so their chemistry is perfect).

It becomes kind of a love triangle of course - the perennial story of the "Friend Zone" done in Woody's approach as Vonnie is really with Phil and Bobby being in love with Vonnie and her being love with him AND Phil and when will uncle and nephew know what the other has (maybe with a touch of The Apartment too, for good measure, though I may just be reading into it that way) - and set in the backdrop of 30's period Hollywood and 30's period New York; in the sub-plot, as much as it is (which is kind of, well, light) Corey Stoll is Eisenberg's brother, a gangster who rises to power as a tough guy and gets one of those nightclubs that we always think of from the movies, especially in the 1930's and in other period settings. But this isn't so much a Midnight in Paris scenario where the famous figures appearing is part of the running gag (there are plenty of names dropped, more to set us in here and give raging movie geeks something to go 'yeah, ooh, ahh'), nor is it quite Bullets Over Broadway, where the gangster setting really added to the story.

There are some things about Stoll's character that do come into play in the film, especially in the third act, but he's relegated to the "B" plot line which is a shame since Stoll is so wonderful in the role and does as much as he can with it (noticeable wig and all). The movie really belongs to Eisenberg and Stewart and Carrell (and later Blake Lively has a small role that works enough as it can), and it is what it is: a story of love being confused around all the sides, and then when a decision is made and third act kicks into gear the 'what if' of it all between Bobby and Vonnie becomes more of the focus. I liked that part of it, what is not said being shown with these two young people who do love each other and like each other's energy but, of course, the world as it is and what Hollywood and New York and respective other lovers have to offer gets in the way. Or the old "the heart wants what it wants" logic of other Allen movies coming back around.

So it it terribly original? No. But I found myself laughing through chunks of it - not through all, but enough - and some of it through jokes about Judaism which I thought by now I would have had enough of through nearly 50 years of Woody flicks. He still has great lines and sharp wit, and by now, in his 80th year, there is a slightly more mature look at what relationships have to offer for people or what people settle for, and it's regardless of period or not. Adding to all of this is the technical side of Vittorio Storaro, the master Italian cinematographer behind many of Bertolucci's and Beatty's directed films and Apocalypse Now, who a) gets Woody to shoot digitally and... it works, especially for scenes meant for very low light by candle or other means, and b) gets the camera to move, often, and this is a nice change from some (not all) films by this director which can be static and with long takes. The movement's refreshing and aside from that all of the locations and the whole nightclub and different places in Hollywood are gorgeous... which is all part of the point, isn't it?

It's a movie that could be comfortable back in the 30s, maybe with Lubitsch writing/directing (again, Wilder connection comes through), and Woody's got a top shelf cast to work with. If only there was more time for Stoll and his story, thrown in more-so as a slight, running gag and to have excuses for 'gangster' moments like throwing people into holes to cover up with cement and things like that, maybe it would be even more complete. So it's not any huge "Return to Form", though by this point what form would this filmmaker have to return to? He makes what he makes and we can either take em or leave em. I take this one mostly happily, with a few reservations, especially with the year as it's been it makes for some good, well-written escapism.

4 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 171 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed