Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
Husbands and Wives
When Jack and Sally announce that they're splitting up, this comes as a shock to their best friends Gabe and Judy. Maybe mostly because they also are drifting apart and are now being made aware of it. So while Jack and Sally try to go on and meet new people, the marriage of Gabe and Judy gets more and more strained, and they begin to find themselves being attracted to other people.
The sort of film that exists solely so that pseudointellectuals who have never been an opium-addled prostitute or a vagrant with superfluous nipples all over his frostbitten face can meet in the lobby afterwards and trade banal comments about its "honesty," then perhaps tell their dull friends at a party the next week how very good the acting was, and then never speak or think of it again. Why ought we care about the state of these dithering yammerers' marriages? The only marriage we care to think of is that between revolutionary thought and revolutionary praxis, as we have explained to our lovers many times.
Performances : 7/10
Story : 6.4/10
Production : 7.9/10
Overall : 7.1/10
At the rate I'm going I think I'll be done the entire Woody Allen catalogue by June. Husbands and Wives is more of the same from Allen, narratively speaking. Production-wise though it's definitely one of his more unique. The cross cutting between the drama unfolding between the characters and the interviews taking place after the fact was inspired and the editing techniques employed is jarring (I promise I mean that in a complimentary way).
Allen and company are great in their respective roles. Sydney Pollack was wonderful, as was Liam Neeson, who for some reason didn't have a gun at any point in the entire movie.
Film #26 of Project 90
”It’s the second law of thermodynamics, sooner or later everything turns to shit.”
Shockingly honest and outrageously critical, Husbands and Wives could have been a sadistic experience if it wasn't for Woody Allen’s unique sense of humor. Like any other movie from Allen it looks very simple and ordinary at first but if you look closer you’ll see that Allen’s precise and delicate portrayal of various characters and their romantic behaviours along with a distinctive narrative structure have provided the film with an unbelievable power to not only shock its viewers but also to ruin all their myths abut love, romance and happiness. In short Husbands and Wives leaves its viewers discombobulated.
The relationship between…
One of the best films ever made about marriage, as Woody and Mia Farrow witness the break-up of their best friends (Sydney Pollack and Judy Davis), and begin to see that dissatisfaction reflected in their own relationship.
When people say that Allen's more recent dramas have been a pale imitation of his best work, this may well be the "best work" they have in mind: a bristling, brilliant examination of adulthood, romance and the conflicting emotions held within the heart of every human being.
Though filmed in a somewhat peculiar manner - as a mockumentary complete with handheld photography, jump cuts and talking head inserts - it remains a simply staggering achievement, building exponentially in power and resonance as it…
It's when you watch a Woody Allen movie at its best, with believable, complex, and psychologically sophisticated characters that you realise how fluff like To Rome With Love is Allen gone completely off the boil.
Husbands and Wives examines the nature of married life and the idea of the grass being greener on the other side in a much more satisfying way than in that later film. The innovative faux-documentary style works very well and the characters' motivations are explored with real acuity.
It's to the movie's credit that it wasn't completely overshadowed by the off-screen drama between Allen and Mia Farrow. This is partly down to the amazingly natural performances form all involved.
Discussed with Listen Up Philip and The Color Wheel filmmaker Alex Ross Perry in the latest episode of The Cinephiliacs. Can't stress the fact how weird the handheld camera makes the entire rhythms of Allen's usually facetious and harmless comedy suddenly feel loaded with arsenic. The way that Perry talks about some of the more insane moves of the camera makes me want to rewatch it immediately to see how even more weird it gets.
A handful of insights to the inner workings of faulty marriages amidst dry dialogue and sequences acted out by characters who are essentially unintentional parodies of intellectuals incapable of understanding theirs and others' emotions.
I am very nearly done with Woody Allen's entire filmography (so far) and there's just something so captivating and almost comforting about his movies to me, even ones without happy endings or those making shaky moral claims. This isn't quite either one of those, but it certainly tackles a lot of darker aspects of relationships, and seeing the interactions between the two couples is great to watch.
That being said, there weren't really any "wow" moments for me in this one. It's interesting, as I find most Allen movies to be, and it's certainly in his upper tier in terms of quality, but it didn't stand out to me the way I expected it to be. I was reminded of…
1 van Michiel's favorieten, het werd tijd.
Woody Allen poot hier een film neer die over heel complexe gevoelens van liefde, huwelijk, verdraagzaamheid, ... Hij beziet het van verschillende hoeken maar toch sijpelt zijn cynisme er overal wel een beetje door. Het is een beetje alsof volwassenen kinderen zouden zijn, mochten ze nu voor de verandering eens ECHT eerlijk zijn met elkaar misschien dat ze dan gelukkiger zouden zijn, maar hey, niet dat ik er al zo veel ervaring mee heb. De interessante kijken houdt de film interessant en ik zit constant na te denken wat er nu echt waar is en wat niet want veel karakters zijn vaak in een staat van waas en emotionele verwarring waardoor ze dingen…
Woody has made quite a few excellent movies since 1992, but HUSBANDS AND WIVES is the last one you can call a real classic. So uncomfortable and sharp. I like Sydney Pollack as a director, but what he does here with acting is so freaking good.
Husbands and Wives is, to me, the last great film that Woody Allen produced from this Renaissance period of his. Every film after this, with a couple of exceptions, would feel lesser somehow. That this decline in quality also happens to coincide with Allen's public split with Mia Farrow and beginning a relationship with his adopted daughter (to say nothing of the child abuse allegations which have tarnished all of his work to a certain degree) is left to the reader to decide on any correlation.
Narratively speaking, Husbands and Wives doesn't exactly find new ground for Allen to explore. It's easy to see the skeleton of other Woody Allen films (most notably Hannah and Her Sisters) in the story…
At the time of its release, it was very difficult to separate this film from Allen's separation from Mia and his relationship with Soon-Yi, especially with its themes of divorce and relationships with much younger women. Seen today, this is one of his strongest films of the 90s ... a bit of a masterpiece of awkward, dark comedy. Judy Davis in particular is brilliant. I can't say I like the faux documentary aspect of the film though. It seems like a pointless distraction.
Pretty great Woody Allen. At times true to life, other times ironic. Both humorous and honest with great insight but also Woody Allen's usually pretentious psychobabble. Fantastic performances from the whole cast, engaging cinematography with each scene executed in one long take and of course Woody Allen's great dialogue. A really great film.
"It's my belief, pride is the chief cause and the decline in the number of husbands and wives." As interested as I am in discovering that Woody Allen is a fan of music other than jazz, I wouldn't have figured him as such a big fan of country music that he would name a film after the Roger Miller in question, but then again, as many songs as there are with this title, there are probably a few jazz standards of the same name. Speaking of which, with this film, it was getting to where Allen's dramedies about family dysfunction were more plentiful than songs titled "Husbands and Wives", but he had to quit because the family dysfunction he was…
From the NYT website:
This list is drawn from the second edition of The New York Times Guide to the…
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