the film snob

A cyberspace journal about my experiences as an NYU film school grad student, reviews of current and classic films, film and TV news, and the rants and raves of an admitted (and unapologetic) film snob.

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Esse Quam Videri -- To be, rather than to appear

Friday, May 05, 2006

Match Point

For the past year or so, I have been writing film and TV reviews at DVDFanatic.com. Here are synopsis' and links to those reviews.




















Just when you were about to give up on Woody Allen, he reinvents himself with a taut tour de force of a film that is unquestionably the best thing he's done in decades.
When tennis pro Chris Wilton takes a job as a tennis instructor in London, he strikes up an immediate friendship with one of his students, the wealthy Tom Hewitt. Before he knows it, Chris has been welcomed into Tom’s world of privilege and finds himself falling for Tom's sister, Chloe. Yet, even as Chris and Chloe’s marriage draws closer, and with it enormous professional and financial advantages, Chris begins an affair with a struggling actress, Nola Rice, who also happens to be Tom's fiancée. Their passionate rendezvous’ put Chris in danger of losing the wealth and position he has come to enjoy. Soon Chris will find himself facing the most harrowing moral decision of his life. His choice is as monstrous as it is unthinkable.

Match Point is Dostoevsky's "Crime and Punishment"—without the punishment. Or, if you're Woody Allen, you suggest that a guilty conscience is a far harsher sentence than bars and razor wire could ever be. Revisiting some of the themes from his stellar Crimes and Misdemeanors, Allen gives us a morality tale that simultaneously reveals that the good guys don’t always win, but that one way or another, the bad guys still always lose. Even if one can evade the eyes of man, can one escape the eyes of God or of one’s own conscience?

This brilliant and compelling film about lust, love and greed examines life teetering on a knife's edge. On one side is goodness and the other side is luck. If you're a rotten, sycophantic social climber in modern day London like Chris Wilton, you'll want to fall on the side of luck. And you'll need all of it you can get. But, while it just may save your life, your soul is another story.

Woody Allen’s Match Point is a wicked, unpredictable, engrossing, deftly-acted, sexy, revolting film executed with all the deft skill and artistic flourish that has been lacking in his films for so long. Quixotically, by removing himself from Manhattan, the one place with which he has forever been identified and exporting his creativity to England, Woody Allen has reinvented himself with a luminous triumph.

To read the full review, click here.

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