Reel Corner

Changing of the Seasons

Changing of the Seasons

Fall brings change. Within the film industry this change means out with the super heroes, and in with the dramas.

Enter Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine, which amplifies the air with his concentrated self-examination of life-in-crisis that has long been a hallmark of his work.

Born Allen Stewart Konigsberg in the Bronx, New York, Woody Allen, as a young man, had more interest in baseball than anything else. To raise money for his high school baseball team he started writing jokes and comments for cartoons, which led to comedy writing and stand-up. He studied film briefly at New York University. As a stand-up comedian, he took on a persona unlike his own as an insecure intellectual. In the 1960's he began writing and directing films.

His first films were more slapstick; then he hit it big with Annie Hall. Many times he cast himself in his own films as the very persona he developed for his stand-up gigs.

Allen casts and edits all of his films. He has been praised for the success of joining together very unlikely talents in the same movie. In Blue Jasmine he gathered another very unlikely bunch for supporting roles including Louis C.K., Andrew Dice Clay, Peter Sarsgaard, Sally Hawkins, and Bobby Cannavale.

Allen continues to maintain a startling work rate, making one film a year for 35 years. Some of his best known films are Annie Hall, Manhatten, Midnight In Paris, The Purple Rose Of Ciaro, Crimes And Misdemeanors and To Rome With Love.

He has been nominated for 23 Academy Awards and has won four. Three for Best Screenplay: Annie Hall, Hannah and Her Sisters and Midnight In Paris and one for Best Director: Annie Hall.

He regularly plays jazz clarinet in small venues in Manhattan.


Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin, Louis C.K., Sally Hawkins
Writer & Director: Woody Allen

Blanchett plays Jasmine, a once wealthy woman trying to recover from the dissolution of her marriage to a con man (Baldwin). Though marked by a few fleeting moments of humor, the film is intense in its survey of life in free fall.  After discovering her husband built their fortune on fraud, she winds up with her more downscale sister in San Francisco. Blanchett is being praised for her performance with early award chatter.

Under the Radar

Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Sam Rockwell, Liam James
Director: Paul Feig

Fourteen-year-old Duncan (Liam James) is vacationing on the shore with his mother, her boyfriend and other assorted adults whose endless drinking, trashy talk and casual sex force him to stake out his own territory and figure out just who he wants to be.

This film premiered at Sundance last year to rave reviews.
Funny, tender, and painfully authentic, this coming-of-age film makes use of a talented cast, fine-tuned script and an abundance of charm.

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