Skip to main content

Help me out a little bit, you folks from an earlier generation.

I don't get Woody Allen. I don't get his body of all.

Let's focus on the body of work. I spent a small time watching Woody Allen stuff and I found it:

- Not funny
- Not entertaining
- Not interesting
- Slow
- Stuttering
- Self absorbed

Okay, maybe Woody Allen should explore some new ideas like.........maybe writing about the subject matter of extramarital affairs, or maybe focus on his insecurity about being Jewish, or short, or maybe have beautiful women fawning over him and pining for him in a scripted movie sort of way, and maybe he should do that stuttering type of speech where he seems uncertain about how he's going to point out his insecurities about previouslymentionedstuff because it's SO HILARIOUS.

I've seen his body of work.  And here's the number of times I've ever cracked a smile seeing anything Allen has ever done..........................


.......................(that's zero by the way) because Woody Allen: Not Funny. Or interesting. Or compelling. Or challenging. Or even human condition evoking...........

Maybe it's a generational thing.

I don't get Woody Allen. I just........I just don't.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  a lot of his work is geared toward film wonks (13+ / 0-)

    his earlier works reference things like Battleship Potemkin, Bogart, etc. Manhattan, Radio Days, and Broadway Danny Rose are classics. I didn't see Zelig until 10 years after its release; it is also brilliant. That said, he has made some real turkeys too. He started getting weird with Stardust Memories.

    •  See...that's my impression. That his work (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mrsgoo, ladybug53, indubitably, Kevskos

      is packed with jokes that are "insider" jokes.

      That also bugs me.

    •  he hasn't done anything much (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Emmy, peterfallow, Kevskos

      that I was even interested in seeing, and I'm old enough to remember when he was almost funny.

      (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

      by PJEvans on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:38:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It takes a humble man to make a fart joke (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lotlizard, petral

        and laugh about his twenty-something Asian girlfriend in the same sentence.

        Is Spike Lee around anywhere?

        Anyways, I wanna recommend everyone see Dirty Wars.

        If that doesn't win Best Doc at this year's Oscars I will be livid.

        -9.50/-7.59 - "Why are the missiles called peace-keepers when they're aimed to kill?" -Tracy Chapman

        by Situational Lefty on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:42:53 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  that "asian girlfriend" WAS his adopted daughter (4+ / 0-)

          - you know, the one mia adopted and they raised from a small child.

          the man is a creep, an effin' pedophile.  he started the affair (or so he claims) when she was 17-18 - he should be in prison.  period.

          humility?  not hardly.

          sorry, but i loathe that bastard.

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 12:20:24 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  To be accurate she was not his adopted daughter (7+ / 0-)

            She was Mia's adopted daughter. You could say she was the adopter sister of his daughter, maybe. They did live in a situation in which he had a strange, fatherly role.

            I agree that he and his behavior are utterly distasteful and he has certainly been accused of criminal acts.

            But to be accurate she was never legally his daughter.

            •  True. He and Mia Farrow never married (0+ / 0-)

              and Soon-Yi was never his adopted daughter. It was still pretty unsettling though; she was, after all, legally Woody's son's sister.

              They've been together since she was about 19 ('91-'92?) and married since 1997 and have two adopted children of their own. So who knows? {shrug}

              “Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” ― Carl Sagan UID 62713

              by tigerdog on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 11:08:28 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  i've been corrected: since he was not married to (0+ / 0-)

            farrow, he was the man in the relationship with the adopted child's MOTHER.  that does not excuse him!

            EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

            by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 08:10:48 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  My Compliments (0+ / 0-)
              i've been corrected
              Huge step forward.

              You hate Woody Allen because of what you FEEL about him.

              I respect your feeling; I think there is validity there; I even share it to some extent. At the very least I have an uneasiness about him, despite how much I like many of his films and performances.

              The only problem I have had with this diary & comments is the misstatements of facts. There is truth, and there is accuracy of reporting; different things. I don't have any quarrel with you expressing your perception of the truth, but I have an intense and sometimes out of proportion reverence for factual reporting.


              •  thank you for acknowledging my disdain for (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:


                my memory of specifics may be hazy - but the memory of the disgust of many of us in the "business" think of him.

                i will NEVER support any of his "artistic" efforts because of his "personal" behavior.  that is my right as a "consumer" and as an artist.

                he did not deserve that recognition at the golden globes, imho, because of his behavior - any more than pete rose deserves to be in the baseball hall of fame.

                behavior has consequences.

                allen skated with the help of people willing to overlook what he did.  it doesn't matter to me that they remained married (the daughter of the woman he was having an affair with and the child he watched grow up - and lusted for) - he betrayed the trust of a child and that, to me, is unforgiveable.

                one does not "train" or "groom" children to grow up and become wives/lovers.  this is no different, in my opinion, to warren jeffs and the likes of other pedophiles.

                he met soon yi as a child and cultivated that relationship.  he is a dirty old man who got away with it.

                nothing he could do or say has any interest to me - i don't get past his personal depravity.

                EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

                by edrie on Wed Jan 15, 2014 at 08:39:26 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  Radio Days. That's his best IMO (0+ / 0-)

      I can watch it over and over. Hannah and Her Sisters I also like. Mostly I'm not really that big of a fan of his movies, but there are a few that shine for me.

      Back in the early 60's he was a good stand-up comic. That's where he developed the "persona" he still plays today. Personally, I think that persona has gotten tiresome...

      “Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” ― Carl Sagan UID 62713

      by tigerdog on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 10:57:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Do you like Seinfeld? (15+ / 0-)

    Monty Python?  Mel Brooks?  It's all of a feather.  Zany humor but, more like Seinfeld, it gets into neurotic thinking and behavior.  Mainly I think you're seeing him through your own bias knowing about his taboo relationship, and BTW, I don't recall him being arrested or convicted of child molestation.  Not that I condone what he did.  Still, I think he's a genius.
    PS: I saw him on the street once, walked right past me with Soon-Yi.  Were they not together I would absolutely not have recognized him for a homeless person, he was so unshaven and unkempt.  It was 1994ish.  

  •  asdf (6+ / 0-)

    There isn't a single Woody Allen movie I enjoyed. I'll even seen his iconic Annie Hall also - I couldn't get through it.

  •  Just because he's a total bastard (8+ / 0-)

    and no kind of father, doesn't mean he's not talented.

    I really enjoyed "Matchpoint," and other movies he's done have been widely acclaimed as bridging the distance between art and popular entertainment very skillfully.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 08:48:42 PM PST

    •  i won't put money in the pockets of pedophiles.. (6+ / 0-)

      and by going to their movies, that is exactly what the audience is doing.

      it's like saying "rush's show is funny sometimes, i just don't listen to his racist shit".

      you can't separate the two, imho.

      the audience supports the man - and the man is disgusting.

      EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

      by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 12:23:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I tipped this comment (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        susans, edrie

        because while I believe there is often a "gray area" in these matters, I fully respect your sentiment.

        It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

        by karmsy on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 05:54:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  The whole thing is distasteful (9+ / 0-)

        ... on more than one level. But I'm not sure where he's a pedophile. His involvement with his girlfriend's daughter didn't start until she was of the age of consent. She was about 19 when the scandal broke, more or less, since she was only estimated as 7 when found scavenging alone on the streets in Korea. She could have been older due to developmental delay due to severe malnutrition. She was not his step-daughter since Allen & Farrow never married, and always maintained separate residences.

        Again, although the whole business is distasteful, and put me off Allen more than a little, it's also true that the young woman is now over 40, and she and Allen have been married for 16 or 17 years now. It does seem that his attachment is to the actual person, not merely to her being only barely of age.

        If you're going to trash someone, best to do it with actual facts, which are damning enough, and skip the extra hyperbole. Farrow has plenty to be bitter about, and Allen & Farrow's mutual children don't have anything to do with him or their sister (half sister? not sure what to call the relationship if it's adopted children with various non-biological adoptive fathers.) There's betrayal and bad behavior and grounds for bitterness and resentment galore.

        I don't agree with your equating Allen with Rush Limbaugh either. There's very little about the two men which is similar.

        There were things I definitely enjoyed in Allen's work, paying less attention of late. Though I did like the Paris movie; it's maybe done his work some good to uproot from New York.

        To MC: Allen's work, as other's have mentioned, is deeply embedded with cultural allusion (a word which is much misused nowadays, it's not the same as "suggestion"), many of which relate to European cinema and film from earlier generations. "Midnight in Paris", which I liked, is largely about that very yearning for times gone by.

        Mark Twain: It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

        by Land of Enchantment on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 06:37:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Good comment, thanks. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          side pocket, jnhobbs

          Yes, I agree that comparing Woody Allen to Rush Limbaugh was hyperbolic. I also agree that Allen's marriage to Sun Ye may be on a bit more solid ground ethically than some of his detractors claim.

          It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

          by karmsy on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 07:47:47 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  really? a man 35 years older than his current (0+ / 0-)

            girlfriend's daughter is "ethical"?  any other man than allen - any joe blow - would have been arrested for child endangerment or sexual abuse.

            allen had fame and money and he skated.

            i compared rush to allen not in idealogy - but as someone who crosses the line repeatedly - he isn't given a pass - why should allen be given one?

            take allen out of the picture and put any OTHER ordinary man in it and everyone would be OUTRAGED!  OUTRAGED! i tell ya!

            i don't make excuses for celebrities.  i worked professionally in the theatre for decades - we were doing a job - just more visible.  it doesn't give anyone in the arts a free pass for behavior that would land others in jail.

            EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

            by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 08:16:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  I enjoyed Shadows and Fog! (0+ / 0-)

      and all the rest too. His films are the NYRB of great movies.

  •  Is part of the problem that you (5+ / 0-)

    are thinking of his personal issues outside of his work ("child molester"), and that prevents you from appreciating the work itself?

    Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

    by AaronInSanDiego on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 08:49:16 PM PST

  •  I liked Blue Jasmine however tragic it was. (10+ / 0-)

    Woody Allen is brilliant and unique.

    His oeuvre is in a class by itself.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 08:49:19 PM PST

  •  Vicki Christina Barcelona (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    doc2, sunbro, MJ via Chicago

    I love that movie.

    O great creator of being grant us one more hour to perform our art and perfect our lives. ::: Jim Morrison :::

    by Kevanlove on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 08:52:06 PM PST

  •  Not a film critic, so I can't get technical enough (17+ / 0-)

    to defend this, but I personally find Woody Allen films to be precisely evocative of the human condition.

    I think Manhattan in particular has to be one of my all-time favorite films.

    I suspect the differentiating factor is which human's condition we're talking about. People are different. There's an awful lot of material out there to speak to the condition of a particular kind of human (say, the kind that finds rom-coms to be oh-so-true-to-the-heart or Titanic or Forrest Gump to be somehow inspiring) but not so much that speaks to another kind of human (say, the kind that's never seen a single thing in a rom-com or Oscar-winning "drama" that resonates with them, ever).

    Since there's, like, no one making films for this second group, Woody wins by default. But even if there were many, I suspect he'd still be near the top of the list, because he so often nails it.

    -9.63, 0.00
    "Liberty" is deaf, dumb, and useless without life itself.

    by nobody at all on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 08:58:10 PM PST

    •  Manhattan (7+ / 0-)

      "I think Manhattan in particular has to be one of my all-time favorite films."

      Manhattan has always been a bit problematic for me.  Watching it as a teenager, I found it peculiar that his Manhattan and mine had such a small area of overlap-- Central Park and the museums on the borders just about sums it up.  No one rides the subway, for example.  I had to have it pointed out to me that there are no black people in the movie at all.  (Hm: "He romanticized the city." )

      In general, Woody Allen had the advantages of being a pioneer in his field, when he started doing the kind of stuff he was doing there wasn't all that much competition.   For example, the movie "Annie Hall" has a lot of very clever observation/satire of New York vs Los Angeles, but such stuff isn't so hard to come by these days.

      •  Funny thing—I lived for years in Morningside (5+ / 0-)

        Heights and worked in Flatiron and the Village. Later on I lived in Queens and worked on the lower east side when we were first married. I took the subway. Later we bought a station wagon at some used car lot in Parsippany.

        I don't think I ever actually thought of Manhattan as a film "about" NYC. I suppose that's the conceit, but for me it's less about one particular city and more about a particular way of being that's often overrepresented in cities relative to places like, say, North Platte, Nebraska.

        Sure, there is a particular socioeconomic group being portrayed, but check in with the students at the Cooper Union or thirtysomethings that once made their way from the Kosovar resistance or Albiania to wind up in overrated place on MacDougal street every night and you'll find the same types, the same issues, the same stilted but also very finely in-the-human-tradition melodies.

        No, it's not a film about the salt-of-the-earth working stiff who's native to Long Island City and never had a neurotic thought in his life, but then some of us don't qualify (and won't ever qualify) to be considered amongst the proletariat proper. Doesn't mean we can't have a film. ;-)

        -9.63, 0.00
        "Liberty" is deaf, dumb, and useless without life itself.

        by nobody at all on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:13:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  A 40 something (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      having an affair with a teenager didn't bother you?  That is the plot of Manhattan.

      •  That is also the plot of South Pacific. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Creosote, MJ via Chicago

        And Fred Astaire had quite a few years on Leslie Caron and Audrey Hepburn when he romanced them in Daddy Long-Legs and Funny Face.

        Bothersome? To some people, surely. There will always be a percentage of people who can't enjoy a movie, simply on the basis of its "bothersome" theme/plot.

        How about a movie in which adults force young children to stalk and kill each other?

        The Hunger Games sold pretty well. So--for good or ill--evidently a lot of people can separate their real-world values from their appreciation of a movie.

        That's why we can't expect others to give up their fiction because we, personally, find the theme bothersome.

      •  I do remember being bothered when Mia Farrow (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MJ via Chicago

        --then 19--married 51-year-old Frank Sinatra.

        But that was real life, and I hadn't seen much of that in 1966.

        BTW, Farrow had been appearing in Peyton Place (a soap opera whose sex-oriented plots many found bothersome at the time).

  •  Try Crimes and Misdemeanors (13+ / 0-)

    It's among his more serious films, though it has its comic points.  And it is just crushing in its themes.

    •  I really liked that one. (9+ / 0-)

      Also liked Hannah and her Sisters, at the time I saw it, anyway.

      Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

      by AaronInSanDiego on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:09:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's the movie he was making when he went off (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      earicicle, lotlizard, ladybug53, Kevskos

      the rails, 1989. One morality system in the movie:

      "To them, the universe is indifferent to the sins of man. The only consequences you face are practical and earthly — jail, divorce, etc. If you can avoid those, then anything’s fair game."
      Very interesting since it was around that time that Allen himself does the unspeakable, if you believe Justice Elliott Wilk of the Connecticut Supreme Court.
      1993 NYTimes:
       In a scathing 33-page decision, Acting Justice Elliott Wilk of State Supreme Court denounced Mr. Allen for carrying on an affair with one of Ms. Farrow's daughters, trying to pit family members against one another and lacking knowledge of the most basic aspects of his children's lives.

      The judge also denied Mr. Allen immediate visiting rights with his 7-year-old daughter, Dylan Farrow. Last summer Ms. Farrow accused the 57-year-old film maker of molesting the child. Justice Wilk said it was unlikely that Mr. Allen could be prosecuted for sexual abuse based on the evidence. But while a team of experts concluded that Dylan was not abused, the judge said he found the evidence inconclusive. [To go to trial, the 5-year old would have had to testify and Farrow took the advice of the child's therapist and spared her the ordeal.]

      Referring to what Dylan's own psychotherapist called Mr. Allen's inappropriately intense behavior toward the little girl [then 5], the justice said it was unclear whether Mr. Allen could ever develop "the insight and judgment necessary for him to relate to Dylan appropriately."

      To thine ownself be true

      by Agathena on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:41:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  One of my favorites (5+ / 0-)

      Though -- to be honest -- I generally like his films.  Howard Cosell interviewing the just-shot president on the steps...Annie Hall's brother describing his suicidal thoughts just before driving them through the rain...almost all of Sleeper...pulling Marshall McLuhan into the frame...

      ...but of all those, and despite my admiration for Paris, I like Crimes and Misdemeanors the most. Not because I liked what happened.  But because it made you ask yourself what you might do in similar circumstances.  Maybe it's a wealthy white guy thing. But it was a terrific film.

  •  Woody Allen's body of work (17+ / 0-)

    will live on and on. Like all great comedians, millions find him funny and millions find him unfunny. You aren't aware that there is broad opinion on EVERY artist?

    •  I'm aware of contextual definitions of Funny (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      marina, lotlizard, Kevskos

      what I'm asking is

      WHAT THE FUCK?!?!

      Woody Allen? What are the boomers THINKING?

      I dont' get it.

      •  He got to us young. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NYFM, Dumbo

        He was ahead of his time, I thought. But I'm not sure I'd find him the same if I had just now seen his stuff for the first time. He's been around a long time.

        What is so unnerving about the candidacy of Sarah Palin is the degree to which she represents—and her supporters celebrate—the joyful marriage of confidence and ignorance. SAM HARRIS

        by Cpqemp on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:34:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I know you don't want to hear it (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        buffie, heynonny

        But you should watch more of his films. Perhaps after checking your attitude outside.

      •  Allen is a genuine special case of white privilege (0+ / 0-)

        I wonder to what extent people's perceptions of the acceptability of his daughter-wife relationship are subconsciously infuenced by Soon-Yi being a person of color and in particular of East Asian extraction, with all the attendant stereotypes.

        The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

        by lotlizard on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 02:40:45 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  You have to like self-deprecating humor. Allen's (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bobswern, NYFM, blueoregon, sunbro, coachster

      comedy is brutal, but only to his on-screen persona.  The guy just cracks me up.

      Ted Cruz president? Pardon my Vietnamese, but Ngo Pho King Way.

      by ZedMont on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:20:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  in real life, he's an arrogant prick. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        used to see him on the street in ny - he swaggered about like some bantam cock rooster in the henyard.

        now, knowing his proclivity toward naive children, i understand better his projected image.

        EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

        by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 12:27:47 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  asdf (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          coachster, Creosote

          Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          •  it is true, it is necessary because i will NEVER (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Kevskos, susans

            give child molesters a pass because they make movies.

            is that clear enough for you?

            people keep posting that he does autobiography as a neurotic, insecure bladabladabladaaaaa.... and nothing could be further from the truth.

            that is an ACT, people - he could have worked for ringling brothers - he is that good at snookering people.

            in real life, he is an arrogant prick.  

            i'm a new yorker, remember?  in theatre, remember?  worked there, ran into him.  

            so you want me to color the truth to lie?


            sorry.  i do not lie.  especially to give a child molester a free pass.

            EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

            by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 12:55:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  With edrie on this one. True and necessary. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Kevskos, edrie

            And kind to children — little girls who probably ought not to be put in the position of being only eleven years old upon first meeting their prospective husband-to-be in the guise of their mom's boyfriend.

            The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

            by lotlizard on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 02:46:11 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Having been falsely accused myself, (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              live1, UnionMade, Creosote, itsjim

              of harassment -- I am leery of making definitive judgements. I know how easy it is to say something horrible and salacious and there is a certain segment eager to believe any such indictment no matter how little evidence (or clear evidence against). People throw the words "child molester" out there and that is something we just don't know. What we DO know is that at the very least he carried on an affair with his girlfriend(not wife)'s adopted ADULT daughter (she was 20 at the time). Tacky, certainly -- disgusting, hard to argue with. But not illegal, not incest and not pedophilia. He never adopted or raised her, never lived with Farrow, and consequently with her daughter.

              And yes, Dylan "accused" him but the video that contains that accusation also contains Farrow coaching the child. Unwise at best, devious at worst...especially as you consider that Farrow was (and is) unhinged. What kind of mother declares publicly that she's not sure who her kid's father is? Why would she put him in the spotlight like that?

              Those kids are messed up as the product of two egocentric Hollywood weirdos, for sure. And I'm suspicious and  uncertain of Allen's true nature; we know enough to keep our kids away from him and avoid hero-worship -- but we don't know enough to to condemn and the possibility exists that the child-molestation accusation was created by his ex-girlfriend to get back for the shitty way he treated her by leaving her for her daughter.

              Cad, definitely. Criminal? You might be wrong. I know personally how circumstance can hang a man and be 100% wrong.

              If Jesus had a gun, he'd be alive today.

              by PBJ Diddy on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 05:14:14 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  There seem to be diametrically opposing views of (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                … the truth regarding this point:

                never lived with Farrow
                Other commenters and presumably the diarist dispute that, asserting the exact opposite: that it's a well-known verifiable fact that Allen and Farrow were de facto living together for a period of time.

                The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

                by lotlizard on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 06:06:11 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Yes, we dispute the "living together" claim (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  They do it in layers; like global warming deniers. They try the big lie first and then ratchet back if they discover you know some facts:

                  H(ater): Woody Allen married his stepdaughter.
                  N(on)H(ater): Uhh no, Woody Allen & Mia Farrow were never married. Soon-Yi is not his step- or adopted- daughter.
                  H: Well they presented themselves as man & wife, Common Law marriage.
                  N: No, they never publicly presented themselves as married or otherwise met the legalities of Common Law marriage.
                  H: They were engaged.
                  N: Nope.
                  H: Well they lived together as a family.
                  N: No, never. In fact, Farrow did not restrict her “dating” to Woody Allen. I assume Allen played as well; certainly by the last few years of their relationship they were hardly dating each other at all except for meals oriented around two subsequent OTHER children they had adopted together, and the natural child Allen had been told was his.
                  H: They adopted Soon-Yi and raised her together.
                  N: No. Farrow (then married to Previn) was a serial adopter (admirable, 9 in total along with 4 biological, good for her) and had adopted Soon-Yi two years before she started dating Allen. Woody Allen had neither then, nor ever, any family or legal relationship whatsoever with Soon-Yi.
                  H: Well, Soon-Yi was raised from a small child with Allen as an important figure.
                  N: Soon-Yi was about 8 years old by the time Allen & Farrow began dating. A complicating factor here is that Soon-Yi’s birth date, even the year, is unknown, only estimated by bone scan (with an accuracy range of 3 years), and the ages for her tend to use the later birth date (making her the youngest end of the range). She herself does so. She could actually be a year or two older, but not younger.
                  H: Woody Allen took pornographic pictures of Soon-Yi when she was 14 years old.
                  N: The pictures were nude but not pornographic, and she asked Allen to take those pictures when she was 20 years old (she says; others say 19; 18 would have been legal even if they WERE pornographic).
                  H; 15 years old, 16 years old, 17 years old.
                  N: No. No. No. The principals say no and no evidence to the contrary.
                  H: Woody Allen molested another child, seven years old.
                  N: Mia Farrow claims that, but a panel of experts employed during the custody battle said no sign.
                  H: But the judge said he was guilty anyway.
                  N: No, the judge said he found the panel’s findings inconclusive. Allen has never been found guilty of anything along these lines; and these are custody charges anyway.
                  H: But there were witnesses to sexual abuse.
                  N: Farrow’s friends and family have described Allen’s attention as creepy. He once was seen in public applying sunscreen to the upper portion of the kid’s bottom. Das it.
                  H: The child said it was all true, and more, on tape.
                  N: Yes; the tape also shows Farrow clearly coaching; and this tape was seen by the judge when he ruled “inconclusive.”
                  H: But the kid says so still, to this day.
                  N: Yes, the whole Farrow side of the family (and friends) fervently declare it. Continually. Frank Sinatra offered to have some guys break Woody Allen’s legs. They BELIEVE it.
                  H: Attic, attic, attic!!!
                  N: The period of time (the two were out of sight) was between 5-15 minutes and most likely at the short end; no evidence it ever happened. Allen says he didn’t even know where the attic was and is claustrophobic and would never go there if he knew. It’s possible. Score one for the haters.

                  •  Correcting my error: 5 years old instead of 7 (0+ / 0-)

                    I said Mia Farrow claimed Allen sexually abused the child at age 7. The child was 7 when Farrow made the accusation but she said it had happened 2 years earlier when the child was 5.

                    I wish these things could be edited.

                    I apologize for my error.

                  •  that's the best you've got to defend a pedophile? (0+ / 0-)

                    "haters" - well, yes, i DO "hate" pedophiles.

                    and, yes, i DO "hate" men who go after the children of the women they are sleeping with...

                    and, yes, i DO "hate" child abuse...

                    and, yes, i DO "hate" the betrayal of trust between a child and an adult parent figure...

                    and, yes, i DO "hate" that seemingly intelligent people fawn over and make excuses for the sorry example of a human being that is woody allen.

                    EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

                    by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 08:31:46 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

              •  did YOU marry your "accuser" - a child who was (0+ / 0-)

                decades younger than you are?

                don't excuse this bastard because you had someone falsely accuse you.  he doesn't deserve it.

                EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

                by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 07:38:28 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I try not to associate movie characters with real (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          people.  Results in disappointment, and with the price of entertainment these days, it's a bad investment, not to mention a real time-waster, writing all those futile letters demanding a refund.

          Ted Cruz president? Pardon my Vietnamese, but Ngo Pho King Way.

          by ZedMont on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 06:11:02 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  I mean...okay, Charlie Chaplain: Funny (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      edrie, Kevskos

      Buster Keaton: funny
      Ed Sullivan: sometime funny
      George Carlin: funny

      Woody Allen: "Uhh...mmmm...ahhh...uhhh....mmm.aaahhhhh...eeeehhhh..uhhhh...uhhhh..mmmm...aaahhhhh.mmmmmm...ahhh....uh...did he say "didyou want coffee?" cuz...ahhhhh...ahhhh...ahhh..ummmm...uhhhh...."that seems forced...d'jew....did JEW want coffee?" aaahhhh...ahhh..ahhhh.. aaahhhhhh...ummmm...uhhhh...aaaahhhh...yeah...."


      ...I guess what I'm saying

      •  I think that you actually think that (8+ / 0-)

        what defines something as funny is whether you think it is funny. Something being funny is an entirely personal experience. It turns out that for millions of people, Woody Allen is very funny, and in addition, is a great artist and storyteller. To you he is not.

        Not very interesting diary, really.

      •  I remember I loved this from Annie Hall: (12+ / 0-)

        Flashback to Alvy at 9 years old at the psychiatrist's office.

        Doctor in Brooklyn: Why are you depressed, Alvy?

        Alvy's Mom: Tell Dr. Flicker.

        [Young Alvy sits, his head down - his mother answers for him]

        Alvy's Mom: It's something he read.

        Doctor in Brooklyn: Something he read, huh?

        Alvy at 9: [his head still down] The universe is expanding.

        Doctor in Brooklyn: The universe is expanding?

        Alvy at 9: Well, the universe is everything, and if it's expanding, someday it will break apart and that would be the end of everything!

        Alvy's Mom: What is that your business?

        [she turns back to the doctor]

        Alvy's Mom: He stopped doing his homework!

        Alvy at 9: What's the point?

        Alvy's Mom: What has the universe got to do with it? You're here in Brooklyn! Brooklyn is not expanding!

        Doctor in Brooklyn: It won't be expanding for billions of years yet, Alvy. And we've gotta try to enjoy ourselves while we're here!

        I loved it because I could really identify with young Alvy.  I realize not everybody would.  He's a bright child and he's a bit spaced out and neurotic and hard for adults to understand because it seems so silly.
        •  This is the aspect of Allen's work (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sillia, Dumbo

          that I found appealing.  I remember finding out that our sun would one day engulf the earth and being worried about it for days.  Other children I knew wouldn't have given it a second thought.

          "To see both sides of a quarrel, is to judge without hate or alarm" - Richard Thompson

          by matching mole on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 04:50:52 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  skewering (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I think it helps to say here that this scene is a relentless skewering of the ignorant, boorish, insensitive and anti-intellectual behavior of the Mom and the Doctor.

          Alvy is actually right, though he's too young to deal with the reality or put things into perspective.

          This exact same thing happened to my husband when he was little. He became very concerned when he realized the sun would die out some day; his f--ing parents sent him to a psychiatrist and then meddled inappropriately in the treatment.

          They still don't get along, to put it mildly.

          Where in the Constitution does it say: "...on behalf of corporate interests" ???

          by sillia on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 08:22:17 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Alvy's on the right track, definitely. (0+ / 0-)

            I'm not saying, on the right track to stability, but his question is spot on.  If the universe is ephemeral, what's the point of everything?  Including homework.  That could come straight out of book of Ecclesiastes.

      •  well, it helps if you're from new york (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        pigpaste, MJ via Chicago

        Or if you're from the New York that used to exist back then.

        It's not really there any more.  Half of the people in Manhatten seem to think Noah's makes bagels.

        •  i'm from ny and was FROM ny when allen hit the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lotlizard, Kevskos

          screen.  i looked at annie hall and went "duh!" -
          "la dee da!  la dee da!!!"  

          give me a BREAK!  i thought the films sucked then and still do - and, now, after seeing the devolution of allen into his perversity, i STILL can't stand his movies.

          none of them.

          never liked them, thought them stoopid... like how "chorus line" was SUPPOSED to be about dancers while it was really how outsiders thought dancers were really like.  all projected fantasies that missed the mark by a mile!

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 12:31:07 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly.... (0+ / 0-)

        Humor is in the mind of the beholder....
        Personally, I don't find Ed Sullivan particularly funny, nor do I care for Buster Keaton's humor.  I don't care for Monty Python, or the 3 Stooges, or Laurel and Hardy.  
        I appreciate Charlie Chaplin (who, btw, had some difficulties with the young ladies himself) on some level (I like some films and others, ehhhh) and I find George Carlin ironically funny.
        It's their humor I like, or don't like.
        As for any of their personal lives....well, art is full of folks you wouldn't really want to meet or have in your well-ordered lives.  But, their art, whether you like it, or not is memorable.

        I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

        by Lilyvt on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 05:27:52 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  agree with Carlin, but (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MJ via Chicago, itsjim

        chaplin didnt wear well with time
        sullivan never wore well to begin with

        and then there is my alll time favorite film maker Keaton.
        a genius. but most of his films were not really all that funny, just incredible visual experiences.

  •  Woody Allen is a genius. (15+ / 0-)

    I've seen all of his movies, some twice. I loved every one.

    Proud to be a Democrat

    by Lying eyes on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:16:27 PM PST

  •  Oh brother. nt (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bobswern, annetteboardman, Jarrayy
  •  "Let's leave aside his obsession with younger (4+ / 0-)

    his obsession with younger girls he's adopted..." at top of diary.

    "...without resorting to insisting that if I see more of his crap this child molester will seem funny" - at end of diary.

    You're clearly critiquing him based on what you pretend to not be critiquing him about. Why do that? If yo uwant to go after thim for that - go after him for that. Pretty sure you won't get much pushback for that here.

    P.S. Bad people can be creative geniuses.

  •  It's like that (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coachster, BachFan, MJ via Chicago, susans

    I've been surrounded by people my whole life who love Monty Python.  People I love and respect and agree with about so many other things.  Never struck me as funny.

    Same thing with The Office.

    We get to like what we like.

    I think some Woody Allen movies are pure genius, but don't like others so much. Something I've found fascinating about his movies is sometimes years later I'll remember something I didn't think was particularly funny at the time, and now it cracks me up. I've had some life experiences that make me more fully appreciate it or something.

  •  I'm over 50.. (11+ / 0-)

    He's a genius and national treasure, imv.

    And to those that said they've never seen a Seinfeld episode. Try it, you'll LOVE them. Give it a chance. Let the taste develop.

    Friends? Not in the same universe as Seinfeld.

    What is so unnerving about the candidacy of Sarah Palin is the degree to which she represents—and her supporters celebrate—the joyful marriage of confidence and ignorance. SAM HARRIS

    by Cpqemp on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:31:29 PM PST

    •  I tried Allen. I TRIED (0+ / 0-)

      I really tried.

      I REALLY did.

      Man does nothing for me.

      I think he's just plain old era based contextual humor that I don't even see or get.

    •  He is a genius! (4+ / 0-)

      He loves New York City, for one thing. The cinematography in his NYC movies makes the city glow. And listen to the dialogue-so many hysterical lines(often political Kossacks-you'll love them!) and wonderful thoughts about love, death, relationships, etc.  Annie Hall, Manhattan, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Match Point Midnight in Paris(a love letter to another city I love) and Blue Jasmine and Hannah and her sisters are phenomenal. He has written incredible roles for women, which is unfortunately getting to be a rarity among Hollywood scriptwriters. Sit back and give his movies a look-see. Also, he loves the Marx Brothers!

      "Well Clarice, have the lambs stopped screaming?"

      by buffie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 04:03:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Woody (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NYFM, PJEvans

    I don't get him, either. I find him pathetic to watch, almost to the point that he makes me uncomfortable because he's so smarmy. I girl in college made me take her to 'Hannah and Her Sisters' - ugh, one of the worst dates ever. I think the only time anything he ever did made me smile just a little bit was the last part of 'Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex But Were Afraid To Ask' where he was playing a sperm about to be ejaculated, but that's it. Now he just grosses me out to look at - I get that Hollywood stars like him as they seem to work for nearly nothing to be in his films, but he hasn't had a genuine hit in years. Actually, I think HAHS was the last one to make any amount of money at all.
    I did later see a XXX movie called 'Hannah Does Her Sisters' - it was more entertaining.

    Language professors HATE me!

    by Zornorph on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:34:19 PM PST

    •  He's supposed to be pathetic and smarmy (6+ / 0-)

      He's the everyman, not the hero, he's the anti-hero.

      He came out of classic comedy writing for TV, with Carl Reiner, Dick Cavett, etc. for Sid Caesar. Do you know the old Dick Van Dyke show? Where Dick plays a comedy writer? Carl Reiner plays the boss, just as Sid Caesar was Carl Reiner's boss. That's the world Allen worked in.

      The character he portrays on film? He's the deliberate caricature of a neurotic NY artsy intellectual. Someone who came up from a lower-class immigrant Jewish family. He's a non-techy geek, a nerd, in Yiddish a nebbish.

      As a director, rather than a character in his own films, he has received a lot of praise from actors who work with him.

      His personal life? Ick.

      •  Yes, that is how I understand his character (0+ / 0-)

        as a nebbish--and it's most clear in "Zelig." That is a film worth discussing.

        Also very often the other characters are supposed to be shallow, pseudo-intellectuals, people who think they are smart or clever but are actually tedious and predictable. Their portrayal might be something of a critique of that type of affluent, shallow person.

        I'm from that older generation  and remember when Annie Hall was fresh and new. In recent decades though I've been entirely uninterested, almost repelled, by Allen's movies because I'm totally bored with the portrayal of these characters over and over.

        "Midnight in Paris" however breaks out of the tedium, it is a lovely, fun, beautiful gem that I will watch over and over and over. There is real acting in it, not just whining. Our screenwriter 'hero' is not just a nebbish but is also warm-hearted and appealing. The characters are being spoofed for their shallowness but with a light touch. And the music!

        Where in the Constitution does it say: "...on behalf of corporate interests" ???

        by sillia on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 08:41:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Here's a list of 7 of his best flicks... (9+ / 0-)'ll find these on many folks' "top-10" lists of Woody Allen flicks alphabetical order...

    "Crimes and Misdemeanors" (1989)
    "Hannah and Her Sisters" (1986)
    "Husbands and Wives" (1992)
    "Love and Death" (1975)
    "Manhattan" (1979)
    "Purple Rose of Cairo" (1985)
    “Radio Days” (1987)

    How many of these have you seen?

    "Manhattan" is considered by many film aficionados to be one of the best flicks, cinematographically speaking, ever shot in New York.

    "Husbands and Wives" is considered by some to be his best work.

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 09:35:05 PM PST

  •  Audiences seem to be love/hate with Allen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I guess it just doesn't appeal to everyone.  I have only seen a few of his movies, and most of the time the idea of seeing a Woody Allen movie doesn't really appeal to me.  But when I sit down and watch one, I find I like them.

    I think the first movie of his that I saw was Mighty Aphrodite, and I enjoyed it.

  •  Muskegon, (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard, dougymi, Kevskos, BachFan, itsjim

    I'm sure you've noticed that no one actually tells you what's good about him and just reiterates that he's a genius.

    I think you and I are about the same age and I too think that he's terribly overrated, although I sort of understand why people can get into him. That being said, I know a lot of people our age who revere him, so it isn't entirely generational.

    One thing I think, is that his influence is so ingrained into so much of recent comedy that it can sometimes be hard to parse out that it's coming from him. I'm not surprised to see all the references to Seinfeld, because that's the first thing that came to my mind as an heir to Woddy Allen. But, if you're trying to understand Woody Allen, I think the person you might actually want to look at is Paul Reiser from the show Mad About You.

    I saw some Mad About You episodes recently after not having seen it for years and it struck me that he's basically doing a really, really second rate version of the Woody Allen thing. Whereas Seinfeld is a genius in his own right and takes things to a new level, Reiser is so obvious and straight forward that the whole game becomes clear. Watch Mad About You, imagine that he's actually good, and you've got Allen.  

    •  I can respect this (0+ / 0-)

      but only if I'm trying to respect woody allen.

      Which I'm not.

      Now....Paul Reizer, whose name I recognize, but don't associate with anything, is a good point.

      However...Seinfeld............whose body of work I also

      I have to admit that I've become pretty woefully ignorant of any modern, or even historical, humorists.

      Louis CK is funny.

      Perhaps we can agree on that as a base of comparison.

      •  Louis CK is hilarious (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        although I don't know how you could/would compare him to Woody Allen. Of course, I don't spend a lot of time thinking about Woody Allen.

        That being said, you, as an intelligent-seeming person, would probably enjoy Seinfeld. I'd recommend finding some late-night broadcasts. If you go for DVD/Streaming, don't start with season 1. It took a little while to find its stride.

      •  Louis CK (0+ / 0-)

        The opening of the pilot of Lucky Louie is one of the funniest things on TV I've ever seen.  It's Louie and his daughter eating breakfast.  The daughter asks why she can't go out and play.  She keeps asking why until Louie keeps explaining the previous answer until he gets to approximately 'God is dead and we're all alone'.  At this point she shrugs and says 'Ok'.

        I'm with you on Woody Allen.  I've never found him that funny.  Generally actors that seem to be just playing themselves grate on me.  And I've always found the Soon Yi thing more funny than anything else.

    •  Reiser peaked in Diner. (0+ / 0-)

      After that, meh.

      I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!

      by itsjim on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 01:21:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  There Exist Culture and Ethnicity (0+ / 0-)

    My main identity is Gaelic-Celt, Irish and Scot, and much of what I experience from writers and directors with Jewish background feels like ships passing me in the night.

    We have The Jewish/Gaelic interface in our family circles and in my experience it's a fascinating study of cultural near matches and near misses. We're both aural cultures, we both love wit and learning, we've both helped build modernity [there'd be no Einstein without Maxwell] but we have such very different paths for getting to any shared goal.

    On the most superficial level, we Celts often take Hebrew first names on a superstition that it may help us in the hereafter. Coin-flip-sidedly, Jews (and other Euroish immigrants) have often taken Celtic last names, so that their simultaneous familiarity to the Anglo power structure yet slightly exotic feel would help them in in the here and now.

    I'm not right, they're not wrong, we're not better, they're not worse, but our cultures are all different, and some cultural differences are handed down for generations even when we migrate and land up in different circumstances.

    My closest people are Scots, and there is no better demonstration of cultural ships passing in the night whilst simultaneously colliding, than the-probably-not-Celtic Jon Stewart interviewing the obviously Celtic Billy Connolly, which has happened once or twice. 2 great comedian minds who clearly appreciate each other, and share probably all the same human values, but come from entirely different universes in terms of timing, storytelling and audience sensibility.

    I got to become known far and wide as an inventor of harmless but trivial crap, but I must say, if I was Going For the Big Prize, I'd try to find a way to ally these two great aural, storytelling and humanitarian-justice oriented peoples to fight together, to take down this kleptoctopus that's killing civilization.

    They both have the values, they both have the vision.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:07:30 PM PST

    •  and... (0+ / 0-)
      We have The Jewish/Gaelic interface in our family circles
      They both have the values, they both have the vision.

      Perhaps it's the unrelenting cheerfulness of that particular combination that does them in.

  •  .... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaveDC, MJ via Chicago

    stick with Thor or the Avengers.  Maybe you just don't "GET" a well written script...

  •  I give him a slight, slight pass for two movies (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pigpaste, DaveDC, MJ via Chicago

    based on the following compilations of clips:



    "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

    by Nedsdag on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:35:06 PM PST

  •  If you don't like Woody Allen, (10+ / 0-)

    you would surely not like anything at all by Philip Roth, who is a novelist and satirist.  Roth and Allen both mined to death the whole neurotic Jews in love with goy girls genre. There's probably nothing left to be said, and that makes them both a little dated, and probably still strange to people totally unfamiliar with post-WWII American Jewish life.

    I had a friend who told me once that he and his circle of young Hasidic friends considered Woody Allen the worst of all self-hating Jews because of his films.  They're certainly not representative of most Jews, but it's another angle to consider.  

  •  I really enjoyed the movies Sleeper, Bananas, Take (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The Money And Run, Play It Again Sam and Love And Death. I thought they were all funny. His James Bond in Casino Royale was ok although that was a very silly movie. Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex has some funny skits as well.

    But since the revelations of his "private" life, I cannot watch his films. Just can't. I don't even try to question why. I don't watch Chinatown anymore either, and I loved that movie too.

    "Yes, reason has been a part of organized religion, ever since two nudists took dietary advice from a talking snake." - Jon Stewart; The Daily Show

    by Uwaine on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:41:58 PM PST

  •  Polanski (0+ / 0-)

    On a somewhat related note, I recently saw the documentary HBO did on Roman Polanski a couple of years ago.  I think I had vaguely heard that it was considered a white washing so not sure what to expected.  Well if that is a white washing...  The thrust seemed to be that while he was a child molester, people don't actually go to jail for that and the judge was being mean and unfair to him.  I guess I expected it to defend him on the substance of the charges, but as far as I could tell it didn't.

  •  I can't explain why I love Allen's films, I just (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Nisi Prius, DaveDC, sunbro, Creosote

    do, not all of them, but most of them. My mom was like you, couldn't stand his movies. I find people who don't dig his stuff, baffling. sorry.

    "Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." - Woody Allen

    by blueoregon on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 10:56:05 PM PST

  •  I never "got him" either. I suppose I could have (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard, Kevskos, Sylv

    tried harder - but why? Dude was weird. Then the peophile thing - ok, now you is beyond weird. Disclaimer: I am probably the least knowledgeable person about Hollywood/Movies/Celebrities you will ever meet. And I like it that way.

    if a habitat is flooded, the improvement for target fishes increases by an infinite percentage...because a habitat suitability index that is even a tiny fraction of 1 is still infinitely higher than zero, which is the suitability of dry land to fishes.

    by mrsgoo on Mon Jan 13, 2014 at 11:03:16 PM PST

  •  My favorites of Woody Allen: (0+ / 0-)

    1. Annie Hall
    2. Match Point
    3. Vicky Cristina Barcelona

    For me, each was a gem.

    -4.75, -5.33 Cheney 10/05/04: "I have not suggested there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11."

    by sunbro on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 01:18:01 AM PST

  •  I'm in my mid-30s. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kevskos, Muskegon Critic, BachFan

    Never found Allen to be particularly entertaining.

    My brother is nearly two years younger than I am and thinks Allen's films are brilliant (he's seen them all probably more than thrice). But like most everyone in here has been saying, "To each their own."

    Everyone's got their favorites, but Woody Allen to me was just the nebbish, neurotic person that I couldn't take seriously or funny.

    The Grand Bargain must be stopped at all costs to protect the 99%.

    by cybrestrike on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 01:43:09 AM PST

  •  Miller's Crossing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buffie, Creosote

    If this is your favorite. Woody will be pleased that you don't like him.

  •  The work not the man? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The work has to be seen in context of its time: his lead character was the "reality" version of Clark Kent, the anti-hero. The nebbish, the geek. He was a romantic lead who was not at all handsome or desirable or photogenic. He did voiceover narration, he talked to the camera.

    The movie Annie Hall was revolutionary in terms of its sexual politics as well as the style of the moviemaking. He wrote love poems to the city of New York. All the schtick on Seinfeld or Friends comes from Woody Allen's creative DNA.

    I despise the man. The work was amazing for its time. What is disturbing however is that much of his real-life ick factor is easily visible in a certain period of his films.  

  •  I know what you're talking about. (0+ / 0-)

    I'm not a massive fan, but I also understand why his films are important.

    Actually, the pacing and self-absorbed nature of it and self-deprecating treatment of himself as a character in his films reminds me a bit of Bob Newhart (I never liked his show - the one set in Chicago with Suzanne Pleshette). I understand why at the time it was so popular, but it never resonated with me and I found him, as a character, really frustrating.

    There is a lot of self-deprecating comedy of flaw and ennui that I sort of put in that category, like "Mary Hartman Mary Hartman" (never understood that show, but clearly I was too young for it) and the aforementioned Bob Newhart.

    I actually don't find Bananas and whatnot funny at all: the pacing is all wrong, even for someone born in the 60s. His later top-of-his-game films (Annie Hall, Manhattan) are filled with not-terribly-compelling-frustrating-unlikeable characters in situations of their own making because of their flaws. Which is perhaps why people like it?

    But frankly, I never got behind the self-focus, the sexism, the narcissism, the culture of ineffective therapy, the exclusive cosmopolitanism and NYC-as-the-center-of-the-universe-around-me-me-me-ness of most of his movies. But again, that is perhaps why people like it?

    In sum, I understand why people like his films but they don't do much for me.  

    However, "Bullets Over Broadway" is hilarious. If you don't like Allen, but want to give one more a try, that would be it.

  •  How can you at least not appreciate the work (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, buffie

    that it took to make Crimes and Misdemeanors?  (If not enjoy the film at all).  The woven plot is ingenious.

    Please know I am not rude. I cannot rec anything from this browser. When I rec or post diaries I am a guest at some exotic locale's computer. Ayn is the bane!

    by Floyd Blue on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 04:41:43 AM PST

  •  I think he's more than a bit weird (0+ / 0-)

    I have enjoyed some of his films. I think he's hit or miss but when he's good he's really good.

    I'd say his movies aren't for everyone so I wouldn't feel bad if you don't "get" him.

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 04:42:20 AM PST

  •  Reading all this reminds me of 5 Guys Burgers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    some people love them, others just don't get it.

  •  Don't like him, never have. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kevskos, edrie

    And the whole marrying his step-daughter was way too perverse, the nail in the coffin for me when it comes to him.

    Roman Polanski, I can see the merit of much of his work, while acknowledging he's a rapist.

    Allen ... not so much. I can be pretty self-absorbed, but at least I'm not a prig about it. Most of the time. I have the good sense to realize I'm not that interesting. Allen hasn't reached that  stage of development yet and obviously never will.

  •  A surprising thing nobody mentioned... (4+ / 0-)

    The Woody haters here are relying on two main points:
    1. He's a sexual deviant
    2. He's not funny.

    I don't care much about #1. We live in an age where we know more about artist's private lives. If you are going to pick and choose who you like based on that, you'll have to stop listening to a lot of classical music, and not read a lot of 18th and 19th century literature.

    The important thing to me is this: HE'S NOT TRYING TO BE FUNNY. Didn't any of you see Stardust Memories? Not my favorite Woody film, but he drew a line in the sand with it; he's not going to 'try' and be funny anymore. He's going to make films based on his (jaundiced) view of the human condition. If you find parts of them funny, so be it. But he stopped making movies with the sole purpose of making people laugh a long time ago.

    With that in mind, comparing him to Seinfeld is like comparing him to John Belushi or Adam Sandler. Different universe.

    Obviously, I like most of his work, but not because it makes me laugh.

    “Well, hey, listen, we’ve never been “stay the course,” George Bush, 10/22/06. “We will stay the course.” George Bush, 8/30/06, 8/4/05, 4/13/04, 4/16/04, 4/5/04, 12/15/03.

    by coachster on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 04:59:30 AM PST

    •  Thanks, that's very well put. (0+ / 0-)

      Film characters are fictions, just like characters in novels.
      They represent far more than a realistic documentation could.

    •  What some people are saying (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      is Allen is a child molester, not a sexual deviant. Adults playing with other adults can share all the mutually agreed-upon "deviancy" they like, but a grown man taking photos of a naked 14 year old is not just flouting social norms.

      What if she was your daughter?

  •  i love woody allen's work (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    hooking up with his girlfriend's daughter is crazy behavior. don't think he's a pedophile though. it appears to me and his wife are soul mates.

    pretty sure noone on the planet has a worse relationship with his mother in law.

    if  the seven year old wasn't molested, but was coached by farrow into saying she was, then farrow is the abusive parent.

    farrow is no saint. she used to let married men take her to bed. it's hard for me to think someone so selfish and damaged would conduct herself well during the dissolution of her long term relationship with Allen. i don't believe everything she says.

    "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

    by thankgodforairamerica on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 05:03:59 AM PST

    •  the more i think about farrow... (0+ / 0-)

      the more annoyed i get. Pretending Sinatra's kid was Allen's was a disgusting lie. how long did he fall for it?  what kind of person puts someone through that? how could she live with herself?

      it's hard for me to have sympathy for farrow.

      about liking or not liking Allen's work- it would be like if we tried to convince each other to start liking someone else's favorite color or something.

      "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

      by thankgodforairamerica on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 05:35:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Having herself caused a sex scandal at 19 (0+ / 0-)

        when she married 51-year-old Frank Sinatra, Farrow knew how powerful innuendo can be.  

        Her behavior during and after her break-up with Allen could either be true, part true, or nothing but the vengeance of the lover scorned.

        •  Not to mention she broke up (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Andre and Dory Previn's marriage.

          After her marriage to Sinatra collapsed, the Previns invited her to their home to live with them. Mia was sleeping with Andre behind Dory's back and she became pregnant. Andre divorced Dory who suffered a nervous breakdown because of it.

          No one is clean in Hollywood. I think her deep hatred from Woody was the reason she said Sinatra was Ronan's father. I don't think Sinatra's widow Barbara would have allowed this. But then again, there were stories that the woman Frank was screwing in the 1980s wasn't Mia, but Nancy Reagan if you believe Kitty Kelley.

          "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

          by Nedsdag on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 10:38:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Ronan may not be Sinatra's son (0+ / 0-)

        Google John Farrow, Mia's father. Photos of him in his 20s ear a striking resemblance to Ronan.

        "Well Clarice, have the lambs stopped screaming?"

        by buffie on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 10:22:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Um. (0+ / 0-)
      used to let married men take her to bed.
  •   (0+ / 0-)

    (But Were Afraid to Ask) was funny, particularly Gene Wilder in bed with a ewe wearing stockings and garters (just to be clear The ewe in stockings not Gene - but it would have worked either way) and the scene depicting Sperm as Paratroopers... "Geronimo!"... "Save me an egg!" ... but I ain't breaking my neck trying to see his later stuff.

    "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

    by durrati on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 06:24:00 AM PST

  •  Nobody has mentioned (0+ / 0-)

    'What's Up Tiger Lily?'.  ;

  •  NYand Broadway hunor may not play in the stix (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    how are you with Bob Hope, the Marx Bros, Ritz Bros, Eddie Cantor, Burns and Allen, Jack Benny, Abbott and Costello, Milton Berle, 3 Stooges, Oscar Levant, Danny Kaye, Phil Silvers, Lenny Bruce, Rodney Dangerfield, Arnold Stang, Sid Caesar, Henny Youngman, Jerry Lewis, Jan Murray, Mel Brooks, Albert Brooks, Don Rickles, Marty Allen,  Mort Sahl, George Carlin, Stiller and Meara, Art Carney, Elaine May, Totie Fields. Or non-NY  Fatty Arbuckle, W.C. Fields, Laurel and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd. Or Redd Foxx, Richard Prior, Flip Wilson, Tim Conway, Nipsy Russell. Or Minnie Pearl, June Carter, Carol Burnett, Stringbean, Junior Samples, George Gobel. There's a vaudeville tradition of a "dumb act" like Gracie Allen or Stan Laurel, but takes some thinking to get how dumb, W. Allen is in that tradition drawn basically from Hope-Crosby adventure, but narrowly pitched to certain neighborhoods in Brooklyn and the upper west side. His stand up was maybe better than his movies, or his debate with William F. Buckley. The movies now mostly have comedy background but are serious, like Blue Jasmine which Cate Blanchett is going to win an Oscar for.

  •  Who do you like? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Batya the Toon, greenomanic, Musial

    That, to me, is a more interesting question in response to your diary than trying to convince you that you are wrong.  In the absence of concrete examples of which scenes, in particular, were not funny to you, the diary is essentially an extended non sequiter.  Oh, I know, none of them are funny to you.  Yet there must have been specific scenes that constituted "final straws" for you.

    I would be interested in knowing what is funny to you.  Which directors make you laugh out loud?

    As to Allen, his work is a mixed bag for me.  Some pedestrian, some brilliant.  His use of voiceover is flat out annoying.  But I would be hard-pressed to identify a director who has drawn as many great performances, especially from female actors.  

    Ancora Impara--Michelangelo

    by aravir on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 07:24:12 AM PST

  •  Feel the same way about Michael Jackson. Can't (0+ / 0-)

    get past the part about his fondness for little boys though many can. I suppose if you like an artists work you can get past some "little" transgressions.    

    If I comply with non-compliance am I complying?

    by thestructureguy on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 07:55:36 AM PST

    •  Well, or ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... you can appreciate a work of art for its merits and simultaneously acknowledge that the artist is a terrible person and/or has done terrible things.

      I'm fairly sure the diarist said that his primary problem with Woody Allen movies is not that Woody Allen is a child molester but that Woody Allen movies aren't entertaining.

      •  Hard to over look an artist's life beyond the (0+ / 0-)

        works.  Going to creep in no matter what.  Was a huge MJ have in the 80's.  Now when I see or hear him I turn away.

        If I comply with non-compliance am I complying?

        by thestructureguy on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 09:40:26 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That depends, I think. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          susans, TiaRachel

          I mean, Roald Dahl and Walt Disney were both apparently terrible antisemites, but I still enjoy their work a great deal.

          Or to take a more-recently-in-the-news example, Orson Scott Card; I don't want to put any money in the bastidge's pockets, but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop rereading my copy of Ender's Game, because it's still an excellent book.

          I don't think it's a problem if one finds oneself unable to get past the artist to appreciate the art.  I also don't think it's a problem if one doesn't.

  •  I've never liked Woody Allen movies either (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but I've found his short stories pretty hilarious.  Have you ever read any of them?

  •  Woody Allen also a great clarinet player (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buffie, TiaRachel

    Though, I doubt you would like any of Woody Allen's jazz clarinet playing either.  I think it's great.  The man is a genius on many levels.

    Also, I can't tell you how many times I've seen some contemporary comedy that is a complete rip-off of Woody Allen.  There are countless actors, writers and directors that were inspired by Allen.

    I don't really like Bob Dylan's voice, so I don't enjoy his music as much as I should.  But I respect and appreciate him tremendously for his contributions.  I'm certainly not going to write a diary trashing Bob Dylan because I'm too narrow-minded to appreciate his work.

  •  what's most telling is a recent NPR interview (0+ / 0-)

    considering a denial of autobiographiical inference or referentiality in his films - absurd considering that some of his middle period work are attacks on romantic rivals Frank Sanatra and Warren Beatty

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 09:25:51 AM PST

  •  Don't sweat it, in his own words (0+ / 0-)
    “My one regret in life is that I am not someone else.”
    I guess he didn't get himself. Tragic, isn't it.

    Otherwise, I think those folks from other generations ...  thought they have to say he is cool, because his stuff was so "hot".

  •  There are a few things going on here. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bogieshadow, TiaRachel

    Obviously, Allen's personal exploits are distasteful at best, at worst, deviant behavior. I'm sure the guy is a complete asshole. So how about John Huston? He was a pretty sad excuse for a human being. Does that mean that "The Maltese Falcon," or "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" are not excellent pictures? Or Sinatra, who was a basically an arrested adolescent with a huge ego and a vindictive temper. Does this diminish his genius for phrasing? What about Peter Sellers? He basically disowned his children for making innocent remarks that he found critical.  There are plenty of examples of people who were pathetic excuses for human beings, yet were capable of creating remarkable works of art. You don't have to like the person to appreciate their art. Or maybe some people do.

    What makes something funny is somewhat subjective. I think Woody Allen's appeal is partly based on his ability to work on multiple levels. Even in his early pictures, he based a lot of the jokes on some fairly esoteric references, but also included some pretty lowbrow, even slapstick bits. One of my favorite lines is from Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex, when he and the woman escape from Dr Bernardo's lab. They get in the car and he says, "Great, now we owe them a dinner."

    A lot of people aren't familiar with his early standup stuff, which was performed mostly on the college campus circuit. His bit about deer hunting is a hilarious shaggy dog story with a pretty predictable punch line.

    Personally, I agree with the alien from Stardust Memories and prefer his earlier work:
    Take the Money and Run
    Love and Death
    Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex

    I've seen a lot of his later films, but don't go out of my way to watch them.

    I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!

    by itsjim on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 10:10:16 AM PST

  •  His early work is beyond greatness (0+ / 0-)

    Films like "Play it Again Sam" and "Sleeper" are funny, among the very greatest movies in my opinion.  I don't know much about his later work, or personal issues, but those movies are still classic in my book.

  •  Re: Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I was alive back then but I don't pretend to recall all the details.  However, I looked up the wikipedia entry on Allen, for whatever it's worth:

    Around 1980, Allen began a relationship with actress Mia Farrow, who had leading roles in most of his movies from 1982 to 1992. Farrow and Allen never married and kept separate homes.[112] They adopted two children, Dylan Farrow (who changed her name to Eliza and is now known as Malone) and Moshe Farrow (known as Moses); they also had one biological child, Satchel Farrow (known as Ronan Seamus Farrow). However, in a 2013 interview with Vanity Fair, Farrow stated that Ronan could "possibly" be the biological child of her first husband Frank Sinatra, with whom she claims to have "never really split up."[113]

    Allen did not adopt any of Farrow's other family, including Soon-Yi Farrow Previn (adopted daughter of Farrow and André Previn, now known as Soon-Yi Previn). Allen and Farrow separated in 1992, after Farrow discovered nude photographs that Allen had taken of Soon-Yi, who was around 20 years old then.[114][115] In her autobiography, What Falls Away (New York: Doubleday, 1997), Farrow says that Allen admitted to a relationship with Soon-Yi.[116]

    After Allen and Farrow separated, a long public legal battle for the custody of their three children began. During the proceedings, Farrow alleged that Allen had sexually molested their adopted daughter Dylan, who was then seven years old. The judge eventually found that the sex abuse charges were inconclusive.[117] He called the report of the team that investigated the issue "sanitized and therefore, less credible."[118] Farrow won custody of their children. Allen was denied visitation rights with Malone and could see Ronan only under supervision. Moses, who was then 14, chose not to see Allen.[118]

    Ronan Farrow is widely quoted as disparaging Allen and having said he cannot see him. On Father's Day 2012, he tweeted "Happy Father's day – or as they call it in my family, happy brother-in-law's day."[119]

    In a 2005 Vanity Fair interview,[120] Allen estimated that, despite the scandal's damage to his reputation, Farrow's discovery of Allen's attraction to Soon-Yi Previn by finding nude photographs of her was "just one of the fortuitous events, one of the great pieces of luck in my life. . . It was a turning point for the better." Of his relationship with Farrow, he said, "I'm sure there are things that I might have done differently. . . Probably in retrospect I should have bowed out of that relationship much earlier than I did." In a June 22, 2011 report, Reuters quoted Allen as saying, "What was the scandal? I fell in love with this girl, married her. We have been married for almost 15 years now. There was no scandal, but people refer to it all the time as a scandal and I kind of like that in a way because when I go I would like to say I had one real juicy scandal in my life."

    After ending his relationship with Mia Farrow in 1992, Allen continued his relationship with Soon-Yi Previn. Though Allen never married Mia Farrow[112][122] and was not Previn's legal stepfather, the relationship between Allen and Previn has often been referred to as a stepfather involved romantically with his stepdaughter[123] because she was adopted and legally Farrow's daughter and Allen's son's sister. In 1991, The New York Times opined on Allen's family life: "Few married couples seem more married. They are constantly in touch with each other, and not many fathers spend as much time with their children as Allen does."[112]

    In 1991, when the relationship began, Allen was 56 and Previn around 19. Asked whether their age difference was conducive to "a healthy, equal relationship," Allen said equality is not necessarily a requirement in a relationship and "The heart wants what it wants. There's no logic to those things. You meet someone and you fall in love, and that's that."[124] The couple married in 1997.[125]

    Previn and Allen have two adopted daughters, Bechet Dumaine (born c. 1999, China) and Manzie Tio (born 2000, Texas).

    If the above is accurate, I wouldn't say that Allen is a pedophile. However, that he'd carry on a clandestine affair with the adopted daughter of someone he was simultaneously involved with is plenty creepy on it's own.

    Nothing human is alien to me.

    by WB Reeves on Tue Jan 14, 2014 at 11:03:55 AM PST

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site