Went to see Woody Allen’s latest film yesterday afternoon at the Watershed. The blurb described it as a “sparky, romantic comedy” – which proved to be pretty accurate and ideal Sunday afternoon cinema (somehow, I just couldn’t be bothered to watch the Wimbledon final). The film is based in Manhattan and stars Larry David as Boris – “a grouchy, bitter and neurotic retired nuclear physicist who spends his days moaning about the so-called morons and inchworms he has to share breathing space with” (does this sound familiar?). One of the highlights of the film is Patricia Clarkson’s wonderful portrayal of the mother of Boris’s naïve young wife. Neither the storyline nor the characters are really credible, but it doesn’t really matter. The film ends on New Year’s Eve in a somewhat Shakespearian fashion - with all the characters seemingly finding partners/happiness/fulfilment or whatever – and these are Boris’s closing lines, as he addresses the audience: "I happen to hate New Year’s celebrations. Everybody's desperate to have fun trying to celebrate in some pathetic little way. Celebrate what, a step closer to the grave? That's why I can't say enough times, whatever love you can get and give, whatever happiness you can filch or provide, every temporary measure of grace - whatever works! Don't kid yourself, it is by no means up to your human ingenuity, a bigger part of your existence is luck….”.
I may not share Boris’s complete philosophy on life but I, like the rest of the audience, came out of the cinema smiling!