Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The 100 Best Movies: #33

33. Annie Hall (1977)

Say what you want to about Woody Allen (and we all know the negative things) but the man has made some really great films and this one, by most accounts, is considered his greatest. It tells the story of Alvy Singer (played by Allen) and his romance with the titular female who made his life more interesting. Diane Keaton plays Annie to such perfection. The actress and the role are indelibly linked as icons of feminine style and behavior in dealing with everyday, modern life. The comedy doesn't just come from the relationship, it comes from the characters' individual personalities. Alvy is a nervous, intelligent and, at times, xenophobic New York comedian (typical Woody Allen character) and Annie is a wild, curious and flighty night club singer. The two fit each other perfectly and also, don't fit each other at all. There are so many memorable scenes and situations in this movie like when Annie and Alvy stand in the movie line (my personal favorite scene), the dual therapy sessions or the two different family dinners (both of which make delightful and hilarious use of split-screen). There are charming supporting performances from Tony Roberts (as Alvy's best friend), Carol Kane (as Alvy's ex-girlfriend), Colleen Dewhurst (as Annie's mother) and, in yet another bizarre cameo, Christopher Walken (as Annie's brother). It is Woody Allen's best film and probably the greatest romantic-comedy of all-time. The movie won a handful of Oscars (unfortunately in the same year as Star Wars) including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress (for Keaton's fantastic performance) and Best Original Screenplay (for Allen and co-writer Marshall Brickman).

Next Post: #32

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