Vicky Cristina Barcelona
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Vicky Cristina Barcelona isn't exactly a comedy, at least not in the manner of Allen's "early, funny ones," but it's informed by a rueful wit that finds its fullest expression in reflective voiceover commentary. Spoken by Christopher Evan Welch, but surely on behalf of the 73-year-old auteur, this element of the film is neither (as some have charged) patronizing nor uncinematic; rather, it's integral to the movie's participation in a venerable European literary tradition, the sentimental education. Instead of Bergman or Fellini, this time Allen is invoking the François Truffaut of Jules and Jim and Eric Rohmer in his many meditations on the game of love. The entire cast is terrific (both Hall and Johansson get to play "the Woody part" at different points), with Bardem and Cruz especially delightful as exemplars of Old Worldliness. Cinematographer Javier Aguirresarobe honors every drop of Catalonian sunlight and glint of Gaudí architecture. --Richard T. Jameson
Stills from Vicky Cristina Barcelona (Click for larger image)
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Top Customer Reviews
Some critics have opined that "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" is a hackneyed blast at naive Americans left at sea by European sexual sophistication. However, I think it's more a delineation of Woody's basic belief that happiness in love is transitory at best. How can you possibly hold up Juan Antonio and Maria Elena--who are constantly at each other's throats, to the point that Maria Elena brandishes knives and guns--as an example of sexual sophistication? They can't live with each other, they can't live without each other, but she may end up killing him, herself, and a few innocent bystanders.Read more ›
The problem with Vicky and Cristina (and perhaps with this film) is that Barcelona does not really liberate either of them from anything. Both seem too self-conscious and/or too self-occupied to step outside themselves and what they know. Both have a comfort level with themselves and each other that is never breeched. And so although Barcelona promises and delivers a certain amount of adventure, it does not really deliver either girl from themselves. During their stay, they are exposed to a passionate Spanish culture and introduced to a fiery tempered Spaniard but ultimately they both make the same kinds of choices that they made back home. Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) has always been an impulsive free spirit who starts things, loses interest, and does not finish them. It does not matter what country she is in, she is the same, and so the Spanish trip ultimately changes nothing for her. Vicky (Rebecca Hall) has always been conservative in matters of life and love. Although she is attracted to others that feel things and act on those feelings (like her friend Cristina) Vicky does not altogether trust emotions and is afraid to have them and, therefore, is never certain what she feels or if she feels anything at all.Read more ›
The whole film is interwoven and shaped so that different storylines are voiced together by a narrator who fills us; the viewer; with a bigger picture of what happening at all times. Vicky Cristina Barcelona, three characters are placed in the title, starting with two americans who have different attitudes to life and love. Victoria (Rebecca Hall) plays it straight laced; a no nonsense attitude; questioning everything; her sensible cerebral life is her. Currently working on a Master's degree in Catalan Culture she leaves a well-off fiance behind in New York and travels to Barcelona with Cristina to stay with friends for the summer. Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) free spirit; sexually adventurous; committed only to herself; knowing what she doesn't want in life rather than what she does. Cristina's art is photography. The third character Barcelona with amazing architecture, music, cuisine, a beautiful enriched festively soak up the sun atmospheric city.
Living in Barcelona; Juan Antonio Gonzalo (Javier Bardem) plays the moody, seductive Picasso-ish artist who in turn sets out to seduce both girls alone or even both at the same time, a distraction part time, using what he needs to remain creative.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Loved it when it first came out in theaters and
just as enjoyable seeing it again on our big screen TV. Terrific performances.
Really strange one. I was expecting more romance and more Barcelona.Published 2 months ago by JuliaS