Monday, May 23, 2011

"The only word for this is transplendent..."

The estimable movie critic Jim Emerson recently wrote a piece for MSN movies naming the five best and five worst movies directed by Woody Allen. As a fan of the Woodman, I thought I'd toss my hat into the ring and name my picks as well.

I was surprised by how difficult it was to come up with five films deserving of a "worst" list. For all the talk about how Allen's career has declined over the past decade or so, he really is an American master. A great number of directors working today have given us terrific movies to watch (just look at this year's lineup at the Cannes Film Festival, where Allen earned raves for his latest, Midnight in Paris), but I'm not sure there's another one who's made so goddamn many. If I could have expanded my "best" list, I might have included Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Bullets Over Broadway, Deconstructing Harry, Husbands and Wives, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Zelig, A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy, Manhattan, Radio Days and Match Point.

Alas, I decided to stick with five. After much Woody Allen-style hemming and hawing ("Oh, jeez..."), here are my picks:


1. Hannah and Her Sisters
2. Crimes and Misdemeanors
3. Annie Hall
4. Stardust Memories
5. Love and Death


1. You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger
2. Melinda and Melinda
3. Anything Else
4. Shadows and Fog
5. Hollywood Ending

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