Woody Allen's new movie features a screenwriter who wants to be a novelist who, while visiting Paris with his fiance and her parents, discovers at midnight he travels back to Paris in the 1920s.
To me, the movie, in some ways, is a pastiche of previous Allen films-the intro seems to be an homage to Manhattan, the plot the Purple Rose of Cairo, and some of the gags lifted from earlier comedies like Love and Death and Annie Hall.
One theory I have is that the movie is actually a veiled attack on Teaparty politics (the movie opens with a scene in which the writer insults Tea party politics) and later a blow hard holds forth on the dangers of idealizing a period of the past as a "Golden Age." But, even I admit, this is so subtle as to possible be me looking for deeper meaning in what is, essentially, a charming, if a little too facile, movie about the magic of Paris. I'm curious about what other people thoughts of the movie.
But the scene where he and Adriana slip even further back in time seemed to muddle that. Gil uses this as an excuse to present the thesis of the movie: that the present will always seem imperfect because life is imperfect. But it was the only time when we see his confidence shaken, when another character's motivations (and very life) seem to be given sudden significance over his. It's the only moment when one of the past characters is given a life that does not, somehow, revolve around his--except as a rejection of him, ultimately.
"How can she love me when she doesn't even love the cinema that I love?"
on. I don't think the movie is "fanfic" exactly so much as Allen had some funny things in his head (there certain moments like hanging out with the surrealists in the cafe that seem amazingly realized as opposed to the moments with Kathy Bates, don't get me wrong I love her, but she didn't seem to inhabit the character) and he decided to create a plot that would allow these vignettes to be strung together. Now don't get me wrong, I think early Allen, like Bananas, was definitely created in this way. I think if he had gone in the direction of truly madcap farce, the skit like nature of the movie would be fine, but he didn't so the rest is uneven.
Also what happened to the detective doesn't match. Both characters who escape into the past, escape to a period they idealized. They wanted to escape to that time. The detective simply ends up in a time period where he clearly doesn't want to be simply by following them. It works against the very logic the movie set up.