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Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen (2011)

Every time, I swear I’ll not be swindled out of my $7.50 again, and every time, I falter and fail and curse myself. The premise is charming, the people are beautiful, the light is gorgeous, but the dialogue is so stilted it makes me cringe. It’s like Allen has his hand up inside all the actors, flapping their mouths open and shut while he voices variations on the same half-dozen cliches he’s been using for the past twenty years.

“Are you coming to the dinner with my parents at Le Cirque?”

“No, I really need to work on my novel.”

“Why can’t you be happy and enjoy yourself for once?”

Etc. It’s exhausting! And the characters from literary and art history are even worse. Gertrude Stein really has nothing more interesting to say than, “I read your novel, it needs more passion?”

Thank God Allen’s at least moved from London to Paris; I almost hung myself in the theater restroom after Match Point.

Adrian Brody playing Salvador Dali gets the photo because he is the only actor in this entire film who seems to be enjoying himself. Everyone else trudges through their scenes talking like they’re reading off cue cards. I bet $20 that Allen was annoyed with Brody’s performance for being too ad-libby. 

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