Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Cafe Society 2016

     The setting of this film is New York and Hollywood of the 1930’s.  Phil Stern is a Hollywood talent agent and he receives a call from his older sister Rose in New York.  Her youngest son Bobby is coming to Hollywood and she is asking Phil to give him a job.  Bobby waits three weeks before Phil has an opening to see him.  Phil decides to hire Bobby to do errands.  Phil also asks his secretary Veronica (Vonnie) to befriend Bobby because he doesn’t know anyone in town.  Bobby falls in love with Vonnie but she has a boyfriend.  When Vonnie and her boyfriend break up, Bobby asks Vonnie to marry him and move to New York.  Vonnie’s boyfriend comes back and Vonnie must choose between the two men.
     Woody Allen movies are always about relationships.  It’s a study about friendships, courtships, marriages and choices.  It’s human nature to wonder if you made the right choice when faced with a one or the other choice.  I liked the scenery of Hollywood, the cars, clothing, hairstyles of this period.  There is a definite separation of classes between the wealthy and the middle class.  It’s all about connections too, the people you know and what they can do for you.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)  

96 min, Comedy directed by Woody Allen with Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Steve Carell, Sheryl Lee, Todd Weeks, Paul Schackman, Jodi Carlisle, Richard Portnow, Jeannie Berlin, Ken Stott, Sari Lennick, Stephen Kunken, Laurel Griggs, Corey Stoll, Blake Lively, Saul Stein.

Note:  Imdb 6.7 out of 10, 70% critic 59% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 3*, Amazon 3.4* out of 5* with 1681 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Pasadena, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Los Angeles, California; New York City, Manhattan, Brooklyn, New York.  There is a mistake with a piano in a club scene.  It’s a Sojin brand from Korean but these pianos were not imported to the US until 1981.  Stewart and Eisenberg go to Grauman’s Chinese Theater.  Kristen Stewart has her hands and feet imprinted in the concrete there.  Eisenberg is channeling Allen from his Annie Hall days.  This is the first Allen film using a digital format and a first for the production designer and cinematographer.

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