Wednesday, July 27, 2011

AT ODDS: MATT & BEN, 1001, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS



I've found myself at odds with the prevailing winds. But as always, I'm blowing my own way. Here's what I thought of:

- Woody Allen's MIDNIGHT IN PARIS--it's slight but funny with a romantic spirit and an appealing performance by Woody's alter ego Owen Wilson as a writer enthralled with Paris in the 20's. By some mysterious twist of fate and time, he meets his glamorous idols-- F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Cole Porter, and an "ultra earnest" Hemingway-- and we enjoy the creme de la creme of cameos: Adrien Brody as a surreally revvedup Dali!! Kathy Bates as a motherly Gertrude Stein! Watch for French first lady Carla Bruni, and the ever-devastating Marion Cotillard! Frothy fun about the illusory romance of the past...

--COMPANY ONE'S production of "1001." Hated it. It is NOT sexy. It is not inventive. It is badly acted, badly directed, badly written, ill-conceived, and inaudible. Framed like a time traveling version of Scheherezade, it strands Gustave Flaubert, Osama Bin Laden, and a raft of other unfortunate souls on a sea of claptrap about the power of narrative-- "change the narrative-- change the world." It plays like one of those pretentious late night conversations in a college dorm room after much marijuana. Maybe that's what was missing.

-- MATT & BEN over at Central Square. Actresses do pointless impersonations of MATT & BEN and how they made it. Matt is annoying, Ben is a lunk, and the GOOD WILL HUNTING script dropped out of nowhere. The 70 minutes it took for this not very funny skit to peter out-- felt like 170. It's been extended through 8/14.

Onscreen, I have also already seen CRAZY STUPID LOVE and SARAH'S KEY -- will review when they officially open in Boston.

That's all for now, folks!

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