Posted in: 2000 Eyes, by Robert Horton, Film Reviews

2000 Eyes: Lucky Numbers

[Written for Film.com]

The critical reaction to Sally Field’s directing debut, Beautiful, was interesting. That film — admittedly a mess — presented a self-centered, vain, cutthroat main character, a beauty contestant played by Minnie Driver. The response to the movie showed virtually no recognition that such a character might be presented as a source of satire, or be set up for eventual redemption (which, of course, she was). Instead, critics and audiences alike seemed outraged that anyone would presume to place such a lowlife at the center of a film. (We have come a long way from the anti-heroes of the 1970s, folks.)

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Posted in: 2000 Eyes, by Tom Keogh

2000 Eyes: Small Time Crooks

[Written for Film.com]

“My husband Otto was dyslexic,” recalls Elaine May’s sweet but ditzy character, May, in Woody Allen’s new film. “The only word he could read correctly was his own name.”

Ah, bliss. The return of an Allen trademark: a layered-in, conceptual one-liner counterpointing the hard narrative thrust of a scene. In this case, a scene in which both May and Allen’s characters are exercised about some criminal plans. The tossed-off gag gives the moment a shot more oxygen as only Allen can do, delighting in May’s surreal urgency unrelated to the crisis at hand.

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