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Quendrith Johnson


Quendrith Johnson is filmfestivals.com Los Angeles correspondant covering everything happening in film in Hollywood... Well, the most interesting things, anyway.
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The Woody Allen Memoir... We Need the Dregs?

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent

Who writes a memoir in defense of marrying their step-daughter? You guessed it: Woody Allen. And with his new memoir - that was axed by Hachette and brought back to life elsewhere - we all get to wrestle with this Shakespearean dilemma…

To buy, or not to buy? Whether ’tis nobler to read the slings and arrows pointed at Mia, or to take up arms against “Apropos of Nothing” and fling it against the wall.WoodAllenMemoir2020

Yes, that is bad Shakespeare from Hamlet Act 3, Scene 1, often dubbed “the nunnery scene” which, of course, Hachette employees were likely not thinking about during the standing ovation when Allen’s galleys were tossed in the trash, but hey.

Arcade published it, so what can you do except decide for yourself whether to purchase the bête noire of books?ArcadeForthcomingtitles Arcade, a division of Skyhorse,  lists the following three lead-off books on its website - just follow along here for Allenseque irony: “Raphael: Painter in Rome,” “Love Behind Bars: The Memoir of An American Prisoner’s Wife,” and the topper “Hitler: The Memoir of a Nazi Insider Who Turned Against The Führer.”

Can you script something better than that?

On Woody Allen’s website, he leads with this quote: “If you’re not failing every now and again, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative.”

His storied career is summed up in one viciously truncated paragraph, as befits a self-deprecating narcissist with bells on: "Woody Allen’s prolific career as a comedian, writer, and filmmaker has now spanned more than six decades. Mr. Allen’s first screenplay was for What’s New Pussycat?, which was released in 1965. He has written and directed more than 45 feature films, including Annie Hall, Manhattan and more recently, Midnight in Paris and Blue Jasmine. Woody Allen is the author of Without Feathers and Side Effects, among other books." SydowHannahWoodyAllen

The problem for many of us, is that - not only did we grow up with/on Woody Allen films, but we saw nothing wrong with MANHATTAN at the time, or the weird cracks in ANNIE HALL’s facade or bizarre relationship crossover in HANNAH AND HER SISTERS (!).

Yes, Hannah and her (step-daughter) sisters, à la CHINATOWN, sigh.

ScrnmncrWoody2020

We wanted to be Diane Keaton, or Woody in the kitchen with lobsters. We wanted to be fascinated by old films and watchers of THE SORROW AND THE PITY, (Le Chagrin et la Pitié, a two-part 1969 series),  insofar as the man invited us into a dark room, and opened his mouth in the opening shots with a monologue about life being “too short” with a hard “T” pronounced with an echo into adulthood.

So now, at the advanced age of Almost Dead, Woody Allen wants to defend himself against the tag team of Mia Farrow and Ronan Farrow with an offensive strategy that includes further exploration into the dark rooms of their family drama?

Who thought that was a good idea? Soon ye will realize what a grave mistake this “Apropos of Everything” strategy was - but for now, a lot of us will probably surreptitiously download it, pirate it, or even brazenly buy it off Amazon… Because why?

Because we need the dregs, apparently.

(Sorry, had to… yes, a pun from ANNIE HALL closing scene, see: "eggs.")

 

 

Visit or don’t visit here. WoodyAllenlogoAnd remember...

 

 

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About Quendrith Johnson

Johnson Quendrith

LA Correspondent for filmfestivals.com


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