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Allen's Alvy Singer is trying to find love in the Big Apple, despite his neurosis, and falls in love with Keaton's aspiring singer. This comedy also launched a women's fashion trend based on Annie Hall's look.
Annie Hall is one of the truest, most bittersweet romances on film. In it, Allen plays a thinly disguised version of himself: Alvy Singer, a successful--if neurotic--television comedian living in Manhattan. Annie (the wholesomely luminous Dianne Keaton) is a Midwestern transplant who dabbles in photography and sings in small clubs. When the two meet, the sparks are immediate--if repressed. Alone in her apartment for the first time, Alvy and Annie navigate a minefield of self-conscious "is-this-person-someone-I'd-want-to-get-involved-with?" conversation. As they speak, subtitles flash their unspoken thoughts: the likes of "I'm not smart enough for him" and "I sound like a jerk." Despite all their caution, they connect, and we're swept up in the flush of their new romance. Allen's antic sensibility shines here in a series of flashbacks to Alvy's childhood, growing up, quite literally, under a rumbling roller coaster. His boisterous Jewish family's dinner table shares a split screen with the WASP-y Hall's tight-lipped holiday table, one Alvy has joined for the first time. His position as outsider is uncontestable he looks down the table and sizes up Annie's "Grammy Hall" as "a classic Jew-hater."
The relationship arcs, as does Annie's growing desire for independence. It quickly becomes clear that the two are on separate tracks, as what was once endearing becomes annoying. Annie Hall embraces Allen's central themes--his love affair with New York (and hatred of Los Angeles), how impossible relationships are, and his fear of death. But their balance is just right, the chemistry between Allen's worry-wart Alvy and Keaton's gangly, loopy Annie is one of the screen's best pairings. It couldn't be more engaging. --Susan Benson
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Top Customer Reviews
The 1.85/1 aspect ratio found on Blu-ray versions cuts off even more of the original image - -and (again, ironically), it is *this* one that is actually reformatted to "fit your [16x9] TV screen" - but cutting out much of the original image.
Better to stick with this DVD containing the original film aspect ratio on one side, and the original theatrical release "matted" version on the other!
about romantic relationships ever made. Brilliantly written.
Brilliantly acted -- Diane Keaton is tremendous, the supporting cast is
full of gems and Allen himself takes the leap to present himself as a
real (if funny) human being and not a walking joke. And brilliantly
photographed by the great Gordon Willis of 'The Godfather' and many of
most important films of the 70s and 80s.
Wildly funny and ultimately heartbreaking. It's hard to imagine anyone
who has ever been in love, or struggled through grown-up relationships
NOT identifying with a lot of this film. I loved it in my late teens
when it first came out, and I love it even more 32 years later. Every
time I see it I notice different details, depending on my own current
life experiences. A film of enormous wit, humor, invention, and
understanding of the human heart. Its completely unique, playful and
idiosyncratic in style and approach, but that experimentation somehow
only makes it more accessible and universal. If you haven't seen it,
you owe yourself a try, even if you're not a Woody Allen 'fan'. And if
you saw it long ago, it may be time for another look.
For some insane reason, the US DVD is not enhanced for 16x9 TVs,
whereas the UK disc is, so if you have a region free player, and don't
want the blu-ray for some reason I recommend getting a copy of that.
But the blu-ray is a very nicely done step up (especially over the
non anamorphic US DVD). Is this a reference quality disc that
will blow you away? No. But the gains in depth, clarity, richness
give the film more immediacy, and certainly make the blu-ray
worthwhile if you love the film. (Of course, as always with Woody
there are no extras. Sigh...)
All the quirks and personalities of the 70's era are here. See this as historical 70's comedy.
Enjoy the simplicity and you'll be quoting
lines from the well written script.
Man goes to a psychiatrist complaining about his brother. Patient: "Doc, my brother runs around the house, clucking and acting like a chicken. What should I do?" Doc:"The man needs to be reported. Put into an institution right away." Patient: "No, I can't do that."
Doc: "Why, man?" Patient: "Because I need the eggs." We all need the eggs.
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