Satire is a reactionary art form powered by contempt for the present. Although Woody Allen, now 75, has always espoused conventionally liberal views, he's one of the last figures in American culture unaffected by the 1960s' faux egalitarianism.
Having turned 21 in 1956, Woody's enthusiasms remain those of a cultured mid-century New Yorker. In his famous speech at the end of 1979's Manhattan on what makes life worth living, Allen references Mozart, Flaubert, C?©zanne, Louis Armstrong, Groucho Marx, Marlon Brando, Frank Sinatra, Willie Mays, and Ingmar Bergman-in other words, nobody from the 1960s or 1970s. Like Ralph Lauren, Woody Allen has always been an old-fashioned snob.
In his delightful new romantic fantasy Midnight in Paris, Allen takes on a challenge similar to Evelyn Waugh in Brideshead Revisited: recreating a vanished golden age. To Woody, it's the 1920s Paris of the Lost Generation modernists.Read the whole thing there.
By the way, I've been reviewing Woody Allen movies for a decade so let's see if I came up with anything new to say about him this time. Here are the old reviews:
But, don't let that dissuade you from seeing his latest,Â Midnight in Paris. It's a joy.