Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Everyone Says: I Love You

Everyone Says: I Love You; Musical comedy, USA, 1996; D: Woody Allen, S: Woody Allen, Goldie Hawn, Julia Roberts, Edward Norton, Drew Barrymore, Alan Alda, Lukas Haas, Gaby Hoffmann, Natalie Portman, Natasha Lyonne, Tim Roth

Adventures of a upper class New York family: mother Steffi is rich and promotes an improvement in prison conditions, even going so far to bring one inmate into her house. Her husband Bob is convinced his son picked the wrong political belief while his daughter finds a boyfriend. Steffi's ex-husband Joe Berlin lives in New York, but travels to Paris and Venice where he falls in love with the married Von. Since he wants to impress her, he listens to the advice of his daughter who spies on Von when she visits her psychiatrist. In the end, he returns to Steffi.

This light comedy, with a few musical-dance acts, mostly exploits the charm potentials of Woody Allen's writing and acting potentials of a truly huge star ensemble - Goldie Hawn, Drew Barrymore, Lukas Haas, Tim Roth and Natalie Portman all have their moments and portray well their eccentric, but warm characters, even singing charmingly amateurish. With a few outstanding dialogues, but always insisting on shooting the film in as few shots as possible, Allen again crafts more construction and stiffness than pleasure, but in doing so the story seems fabulously realistic and has style, as well as sympathetic scenes, like the ones when Barrymore's character swallows the engagement ring in the food. And a few fantasy scenes as well: like when Hawn's character dances and flies or when grandpa's ghost is dancing on the funeral. "Everyone Says I Love You" was nominated for a Golden Globe as best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy.


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