Earlier this year, Woody Allen won his fourth Oscar, the award for Best Original Screenplay for his hugely enjoyable film Midnight in Paris. The presenter of the award Angelina Jolie had to accept the award on his behalf, due to Woody Allen once again not attending the ceremony. He has said that he doesnâ€™t feel any pride in winning Oscars, because he doesnâ€™t believe the popularity of his film makes it one of the best from that year.
This is just one of many interesting facets of Woody Allenâ€™s personality, and they are all laid bare in Robert Weideâ€™s Woody Allen: A Documentary, although perhaps not with the depth you would want or expect. Weideâ€™s film comes across more as a tribute rather than a documentary, filled with clips and talking heads. The interviews though are quite often a treat. From fans such as Martin Scorsese, who speaks with delight and almost child-like excitement when talking about Allenâ€™s films, to Diane Keaton, who explains how she tried to get Woody to fall in love with her.
There are of course understandable absences from the film. Mia Farrow doesnâ€™t make a personal appearance, but you are left wondering if Robert Weide even thought of asking to speak to her. It is all handled rather delicately as the director keeps a respectful distance. This could explain how heâ€™s able to get exclusive access to the set of Youâ€™ll Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, where we see him running through a scene with Naomi Watts and Josh Brolin. Watts clearly loves every minute of working with Allen, while Brolin seems like a nervous wreck because his director isnâ€™t giving him enough feedback. This is an interesting insight, but it still feels like it could go a little deeper into Allenâ€™s filmmaking process.
If you know anything about Woody Allenâ€™s personal life, youâ€™ll know that itâ€™s worthy of a documentary all of its own. However, Weide deals with these incidents as briskly as he does almost everything else in the film. Weide does however show a clip of Farrow and Allen together in Husbands and Wives, not long after Farrow had refused to go back on the set when she learned that Allen had been having an affair with her daughter. Watching it you can see how visibly uncomfortable they both look, which luckily for them actually adds to the scene. Itâ€™s about as deep and as probing as the film gets.
Despite its lack of depth and insight, if youâ€™re a fan of Woody Allen this will be an enjoyable treat. Itâ€™s filled with some hilarious clips, the best of which are from talk shows and when Allen had a boxing match with a kangaroo, and some intimately touching moments from Allen himself. He shows Weide the typewriter that heâ€™s written all of his films on, and says that the guy who sold it to him said it would last longer than he would. He shows us how he organises his handwritten notes, and how sometimes he just staples these notes to the script if heâ€™s grown particularly attached to them. Having said that, this was originally a 3-hour special made for PBS before it was edited down to less than two hours for a cinema release, you have to wonder if weâ€™ve lost out on over an hourâ€™s worth of genuine depth.
Image reproduced from filmoria.co.uk
Video reproduced from YouTube / transmissionfilms08
© 2012 – 2013, City Connect News. Copyright Notice & Disclaimer are below.