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Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

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Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Old 12-19-05, 05:59 PM
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I completely agree with the thread title.
Old 12-19-05, 06:12 PM
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This thread hurts my head. I don't know, but I just assumed most everyone enjoyed at least *some* of his movies. I think the man is brilliant and I'm thankful he's still releasing films. After 25 years of watching his movies I'm still interested in what he's doing today. Kind of sad seeing some of his quotes.
Old 12-19-05, 06:53 PM
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I've thoroughly enjoyed many of his movies. I recently rewatched Radio Days and Mighty Aphodite and laughed my ass off.
Old 12-19-05, 09:10 PM
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he is right...Match Point is one of the best films i've ever seen.
Old 12-20-05, 02:29 AM
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I never cared for his 70's comedies too much, and really can't see me buying many of them on DVD, but his work in the 80's was really splendid, especially Purple Rose of Cairo, Radio Days, and Zelig. I also enjoyed Hanna and Her Sisters and some others from that time period. And that's when I was pretty much just a kid growing up. As I grew older, I didn't really follow his career through the 90s so I haven't had much of an opportunity to see those movies. Then I saw Antz, and really liked his portrayal of the ant in that movie, and it got me thinking about his movies again. I bought some of my old favorites on DVD, then I saw Anything Else in the theater and really enjoyed it. I was really looking forward to Melinda and Melinda, and really appreciate the way he approached the movie, but his writing always sounds the same. I mean, Will Ferrel in that movie sounds EXACTLY like Woody Allen. And while he has movies I greatly enjoy, I think one of his weaknesses is his apparent inability to write dialoge for main characters that does not sound like him.
Old 12-20-05, 09:33 AM
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I think the man's amazingly consistent, seeing as how he cranks them out about once a year. Sure, there's bound to be some mediocrity in there, but most of his movies still hold up for me. Count me as a longtime Woody Allen fan.
Old 01-30-12, 07:25 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Rival11
well said and with that said, his movies suck.
You may not care for them, but his films definitely don't, as you so eloquently state, "suck". Sorry.
Old 01-30-12, 07:33 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

That's a bump from downtown.
Old 01-30-12, 07:49 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by bluetoast
That's a bump from downtown.


Yeah I was looking for a Crimes and Misdemeanors thread and poked my head in this thread and had to respond to Rival11.

Woody has made many great films and a lot of very good ones.

I just re-watched Crimes and Misdemeanors and would put that in the top tier of Allen films along with Love and Death, Annie Hall, Manhattan, Stardust Memories, Hannah and Her Sisters, Zelig and Match Point.
Old 01-30-12, 07:50 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

jesus titty fucking christ was that a worthless bump. Is that person even alive anymore on this forum?
Old 01-30-12, 09:47 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

I saw Allen on American Masters on PBS a few months ago. He wasn't being cute. He's one of those artists who can't bring himself to like any of his finished work. I've heard other people who have the same problem with their own work.

Granted, they aren't at the top of the food chain, like Woody Allen is. Nobody gives them millions of dollars to make a new movie every year.
Old 01-30-12, 11:33 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Hooray for pointless resurrected threads!

I've only seen one Allen film, and that was Annie Hall. We watched it in my Intro to Film class. I didn't care for it. We were sampling a taste of director's and if that's considered to be one of his best films I don't care to watch anything else he's put out.
Old 01-30-12, 11:37 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by mcfly
I've only seen one Allen film, and that was Annie Hall. We watched it in my Intro to Film class. I didn't care for it. We were sampling a taste of director's and if that's considered to be one of his best films I don't care to watch anything else he's put out.
I suggest trying one of his earlier films, like Sleeper. It's more out and out comedy.
Old 01-30-12, 11:48 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by mcfly
Hooray for pointless resurrected threads!

I've only seen one Allen film, and that was Annie Hall. We watched it in my Intro to Film class. I didn't care for it. We were sampling a taste of director's and if that's considered to be one of his best films I don't care to watch anything else he's put out.
Yeah stick to Back to the Future. Sounds like more your speed.
Old 01-31-12, 07:31 AM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Shannon Nutt
"Take The Money and Run" is still Woody's best movie.

Ironically, it could also be the slogan for his career as a director.
I love his early stuff. Take the Money and Run, Bananas, Love and Death, Sleeper i'm not that familiar with. But I would try it out, probably could get it really cheap.
What's Up Tiger Lilly I need to get also.
Old 01-31-12, 08:12 AM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Allen is a lover of film - Bergman, Fellini, etc. The "great masters." He has incredibly high standards and, in his mind, doesn't live up to them with his own work. I would agree for the most part that his movies are not as good as those of his idols, but, when compared to most dross that passes for cinema, he's far above average, and some of his films approach genius. And if he thinks his stuff isn't very good, at least that's better than a genuinely mediocre filmmaker who thinks he's a genius.
Old 01-31-12, 08:45 AM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by mcfly
I've only seen one Allen film, and that was Annie Hall. We watched it in my Intro to Film class. I didn't care for it. We were sampling a taste of director's and if that's considered to be one of his best films I don't care to watch anything else he's put out.

Your loss.
Old 01-31-12, 10:36 AM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Woody deserves some credit for managing to sustain a filmmaking career for so many years (43 and counting) and turning out so much work in that time. But the fact is he hasn't made one comic masterpiece to compare with, say, the best works--or even the mid-range works--by Billy Wilder, Preston Sturges and Frank Capra. I would argue that Leo McCarey, Mitchell Leisen and George Stevens made better comedies than Woody (think THE AWFUL TRUTH, MIDNIGHT and THE MORE THE MERRIER). The films of the Marx Bros. and W.C. Fields hold up much better than even Woody's "early funny" films. (I've re-watched TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN and BANANAS in the last couple of years and they just don't entertain me anymore.)

I used to be a fan of Woody--back in the '70s, when we ALL were. When did the bloom fade from the rose? I would argue that, for me, it started with STARDUST MEMORIES (1980), when he seemed actively hostile to his fans and seemed to reject the practice of making funny movies. There was something mean-spirited and ungrateful about it. What really killed it for me was ZELIG (1983). It was critically acclaimed and hailed as the Second Coming and one film buff friend even had the balls to say to me, "It's really that good." I went to see it--and it wasn't! It would have made an amusing half-hour short, but did not have enough substance to sustain a feature. I've run hot and cold on Woody since then, and have been in a "cold" period for quite a few years now. I did enjoy some of his films since ZELIG, but they were few and far between and I've never felt like revisiting them.

That's just my take, though.

Last edited by Ash Ketchum; 01-31-12 at 11:41 AM.
Old 01-31-12, 12:40 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Love and Death stands up to any of the comedic masters.

Manhattan is much more than a comedy, and has one of the greatest opening sequences in all of film.

Crimes and Misdemeanors, though, might be his best work.
Old 01-31-12, 12:51 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by mcfly
Hooray for pointless resurrected threads!

I've only seen one Allen film, and that was Annie Hall. We watched it in my Intro to Film class. I didn't care for it. We were sampling a taste of director's and if that's considered to be one of his best films I don't care to watch anything else he's put out.
But, Quentin Tarantino named Anything Else as one of his 20 favorite films since 1992.
Old 01-31-12, 01:05 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Well, in my eyes, you can't really beat Preston Sturges or Ernst Lubitsch in the comedy department. I love nearly everything those two did (that I've seen.) Wilder and Capra are also pretty hard to beat when they're at their best - however, when they're not at their best I find their work highly variable in quality, and I think Allen's best films at least beat their "mid-range" work pretty easily.

Allen's work also ranges from great to pretty bad - but overall I think he does deserve to be ranked among the greats. His best comedies make me laugh no matter how many times I watch them (not that that's the sole criteria for "greatness"), and some of his dramas are also pretty damn good.
Old 01-31-12, 01:06 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Ash Ketchum
But the fact is he hasn't made one comic masterpiece to compare with, say, the best works--or even the mid-range works--by Billy Wilder, Preston Sturges and Frank Capra.
That's pretty god damn harsh. You don't think a single one of his films compares to mid-range Wilder or Sturges? You don't think one of Woody's very best (say Love and Death, Crimes Misdemenors, or Purple Rose of Cairo) are better than Unfaithfully Yours or The Fortune Cookie? I'd take Love and Death over The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. And frankly I know you would too. There's no way you're being honest if you prefer The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes over Sleeper.
Old 01-31-12, 02:15 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Mabuse
That's pretty god damn harsh. You don't think a single one of his films compares to mid-range Wilder or Sturges? You don't think one of Woody's very best (say Love and Death, Crimes Misdemenors, or Purple Rose of Cairo) are better than Unfaithfully Yours or The Fortune Cookie? I'd take Love and Death over The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. And frankly I know you would too. There's no way you're being honest if you prefer The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes over Sleeper.
Yeah, it does seem harsh, but I'm sorry, Woody's stuff just doesn't hold up for me, yet Wilder's and Sturges' does, even FORTUNE COOKIE and UNFAITHFULLY YOURS and especially SHERLOCK HOLMES, a film I love. I would definitely take it over SLEEPER, which had some amusing gags which played well at the time, but it's really just dependent on those gags. Once you've seen them, that's it. THE FORTUNE COOKIE, on the other hand, comments on the human condition and basic human drives and flaws, in a way that Allen rarely tried or succeeded at. It may not be top-drawer Wilder, but I'll take it over most Woody films. I'll admit that Wilder came closest to achieving what I wanted from him in HANNAH, CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS and DECONSTRUCTING HARRY, the only three films of his in the last 25 years that I embraced at the time they came out. The latter two esp. resonated with me at the time. But I never found PURPLE ROSE, to name one that's widely loved, to resonate with me at all. It's a nice idea and would make an amusing short story, but I really tired of it quickly as a feature film. Which is a problem I have with a lot of Woody's films. Nice ideas, but never fully developed as feature films.
Old 01-31-12, 02:34 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Solid Snake PAC
jesus titty fucking christ was that a worthless bump. Is that person even alive anymore on this forum?
Yes.

If we're lucky, maybe he'll come back and respond six years from now.
Old 01-31-12, 02:54 PM
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Re: Woody Allen is mediocre and makes miserable films: Woody Allen

Originally Posted by Ash Ketchum
Yeah, it does seem harsh, but I'm sorry, Woody's stuff just doesn't hold up for me, yet Wilder's and Sturges' does, even FORTUNE COOKIE and UNFAITHFULLY YOURS and especially SHERLOCK HOLMES, a film I love. I would definitely take it over SLEEPER, which had some amusing gags which played well at the time, but it's really just dependent on those gags. Once you've seen them, that's it. THE FORTUNE COOKIE, on the other hand, comments on the human condition and basic human drives and flaws, in a way that Allen rarely tried or succeeded at. It may not be top-drawer Wilder, but I'll take it over most Woody films. I'll admit that Wilder came closest to achieving what I wanted from him in HANNAH, CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS and DECONSTRUCTING HARRY, the only three films of his in the last 25 years that I embraced at the time they came out. The latter two esp. resonated with me at the time. But I never found PURPLE ROSE, to name one that's widely loved, to resonate with me at all. It's a nice idea and would make an amusing short story, but I really tired of it quickly as a feature film. Which is a problem I have with a lot of Woody's films. Nice ideas, but never fully developed as feature films.
Woody Allen has been exploring the human condition since the mid-70's. I adore Wilder. He's one of the reasons film is as sophisticated as it now is. But I would argue that Woody Allen is as well. I'm surprised you're so down on his films, as he's always striving (and succeeds far more than most directors) to do more than everyone else.

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