Tweet C*Notes!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Movie Review: Whatever Works

I remember when people were so upset that Woody Allen left Mia Farrow for one of his stepdaughters. Oh, the OUTRAGE and SHOCK that some people expressed over it! But I wasn't surprised, because I am a Woody Allen fan. You only need to see his movies (Manhattan, in that case) to see what his views are regarding relationships. He doesn't really think too much of them. He expects romantic relationships to be fleeting. He's one of those people who believe that you have to get your FIRST marriage (or second, or third) out of the way before you can truly start to enjoy relationships. Affairs are not mistakes, but mere markers over the course of relationships that die before they're even really out of the gate. Eventually, one or both parties involved will get bored with each other, and meet someone else semi-fortuitously. I say "semi" because the "other person" in all of his movies are so well-placed for his listsless protagonists.

So now, we have his latest film "Whatever Works". And nothing has changed. He's still lusting after women more than half his age (in this case, with Larry David playing Allen, more-or-less). Relationships still really don't mean much. And, even though all of the characters have basically shifted partners by the end, you get the sense that if you were to revisit them a year later, they'd ALL be involved with totally different people. And that's where the movie left me cold.

I didn't really care about these characters because they don't really seem to care about each other. Everyone hurts each other with this carefree attitude. They all seem to just be living "in the moment", but meanwhile have one foot out the door for the "next great thing". They are addicts; addicted to the idea being in love, more than actually wanting to be. Sure, they all say they want love...but none of them really try hard enough to attain it. They tolerate infidelity and adultery in spite of themselves and each other. And why not? They'll be f**king someone else three scenes later, so it's all good(!).

I can't stand listening to people whine about situations that they knowingly put themselves into. The philosophy of the movie, which is its title, servers only as an excuse to slog your way through life with no real personal responsibility for making the wrong decisions in relationships. If you cheat on your wife or husband...well, you kinda had to. You had to cheat, because your partner is so uninteresting (or uninterested). You feel as if you are an emotional victim, trapped in a loveless prison. It's really depressing to watch people in their late 40s-60s making ridiculous decisions. You would think that you get to a certain point in your life when you stop trying to f**k anything that moves. Sure, the grass may be greener on the other side...but how much freakin' green do you need?! When do you get to a point when you say, "You know what? I love this grass JUST THE WAY IT IS. Do I really need to look for a different hue?"

Woody Allen has made some great films-- the older stuff of course, but the newer stuff like Crimes and Misdemeanors, Everyone Says I Love You, Shadows and Fog-- are really great. And I have to admit that I haven't seen the Scoop or Vickie Christina Barcelona...but something tells me that I'm not missing much. We'll still be watching Mr. Allen play his out his intimacy issues. And I really wanted to like this film because Larry David cracks me up! But...this film was not good. I was bored. I'm thinking that maybe I'm better off with a younger director...maybe Judd Apatow...

No comments: