I’ve never seen the heyday of Woody Allen. I’ve never seen “Annie Hall”. Then again, I’ve never seen the bad “Curse of the Jade Scorpion” days of Woody. So if I sound like I don’t know what I’m talking about, then it’s probably because I don’t, and have only seen Match Point and beyond.
Saying that, I have one major gripe about Woody Allen movies: every character talks like Woody Allen, and by that I mean everyone talks like someone who isn’t a goddamn human being.
Let me be fair, Woody Allen writes characters who talk like intellectuals (or as he seems to mention in all his movies, “pseudo-intellectuals”). Maybe you might know one or two people who can quote Yeats or sing Pagliacci. In Allen’s world, every goddamn person does.
What more, when people talk about normal situations in Woody Allen movies, it sounds like they’re bored out of their minds and would much rather be talking about fine wines. For example, there’s a scene where Jesse Eisenberg’s girlfriend has passed her exams, and the best he could muster up was “well, she studied really hard and deserved it” as if he was trying to be as unconvincing as possible. Maybe that was how the scene was supposed to be, but it seemed so out of place.
Maybe that’s part of the charm of Woody Allen movies; it’s a reality where everyone reads Tolstoy instead of Perez Hilton (is that still a thing, by the way). Maybe the reason I’m unnerved by all the intellectual / pseudo-intellectual dialogue is that I would never be able to carry a conversation in this universe since I lack the intellect. Also, I’ve watched National Treasure over a dozen times. How many times over a dozen? Enough to be deeply ashamed.