Dallas Movie Screening

Dallas Movie Screenings started out as a mailing list on Yahoo Groups to facilitate finding free screening passes in the DFW area. When Yahoo Groups shut down, we are now posting screenings on our Facebook page at http://www..facebook.com/groups/dallasmoviescreenings
Earlier Reesa's Reviews can also be found at:http://www.moviegeekfeed.com

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Website and Group Contact: dalscreenings@gmail.com

Thursday, July 5, 2012

To Rome With Love

Woody Allen's latest picture postcard travelogue involves four vignettes set in Rome, Italy where the camera embraces the sunlit historic ruins, piazzas, cobbled streets, and zooming drivers. Not as centered on a fantasy like Midnight in Paris, the unconnected stories involve an architect, an architect student, his girlfriend with a visiting actress friend, a young couple from the country, an normal Italian family man and a recently retired opera director. Besides writing and directing Woody also stars in his first role since Scoop in 2006.

Actors all proclaim that they have all wanted to be asked to be in a Woody Allen movie. There's a mystique and challenge that is associated with the prolific director and writer that doesn't really direct his actors instead relying on their instincts for their characters. It's seems like a who's the new up and comers in the industry mixed with Woody's stable of favorite actors. Alison Pill plays Hayley an American tourist who meets cute the Michaelangelo (Flavio Parenti) and before you know it they are engaged to be married. Her parents from NY come to meet the Italian family. Haley's mom is Judy Davis as Phyllis who is married to Jerry (Woody) a not so happily retired opera director who in signature neurotic cadence complains about most things. Until he meets Michaelangelo's father Giancarlo (Fabio Armillato) whose singing voice in the shower inspires Jerry to come out of retirement. Roberto Benigni is Leopoldo, a office worker and regular guy, with a wife and two kids. He goes off to work one morning when he's suddenly sucked into a Karadasian syndrome vortex where someone is famous just for being famous. Paparazzi follow him and report every meaningless gesture as if it's breaking news. John (Alec Baldwin) is a successful architect who gets lost trying to find his old neighborhood and runs into Jack (Jesse Eisenberg) who like John did in his younger years is living in Rome studying buildings. Jack's beautiful girlfriend Sally (Greta Gerwig) is expecting her good friend Monica (Ellen Page) flying in and she is fretting that Monica will steal Jack away because she is so sexy and vivacious. Alessandro Tiberi and Alessandra Mastronardi are Antonio and Milly a young married couple who are from the country that have come to the city to meet with Antonio's relatives and join the family firm. Milly gets lost and hooker Anna (Penélope Cruz) ends up filling in the wife role.

The dialogue is sharp and amusing, but lacks coherence jumping from story to story. In Woody's movies everyone talks, talks, talks. It's non stop verbiage that is often times is interesting, clever but still wordy. The only section out of sync is John. Baldwin is almost the Bogart figure from Play It Again Sam, being the voice of consciousness for Jack as he contemplates having an affair with Monica. He's there, but not there. It was confusing. It's Penélope Cruz who as usual steals the movie as the prostitute pretending to be the wife of the mousy husband. You know he gets schooled. And the amazing opera voice of Fabio Armiliato is wonderful but Jerry's concept for the opera staring Giancarlo just goes on too long. The film is a curiosity. Not the best, but still worth visiting Rome with Woody when the DVD comes out.
(Review by reesa)

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