Sunday, May 05, 2002

Hollywood Ending (IMDB) (Netflix)
Woody Allen's latest confection, this time his self-referential premise has him as a washed-up movie director, who has developed psychosomatic blindness just as he's starting filming his comeback picture. Tea Leoni is his ex-wife and movie producer, who has wheedled her new fiance and studio head, Treat Williams, into letting Allen shoot the picture. The comedy comes from the lengths that Allen goes to in not letting anyone know he's blind as he goes through production, and the Hollywood jokes.

If you like Woody, and you get references like "can a hyphenate marry a below-the-line person? I don't know, check with Legal", then this picture's for you. Otherwise, it's Woody doing the Woody thing, down to the tweed jacket, black glasses and the whining dialogue, which can often be grating, but sometimes hilarious, as when he flips back and forth between discussing the picture and berating Leoni for leaving him and hooking up with Williams. I'd also would have liked more scenes with Barney Cheng, as the geeky translator for the Chinese cinematographer.