DID YOU READ

Is Woody Allen a genius?

Is Woody Allen a genius? (photo)

Posted by on

Every decade or so there is a felt need among the cognoscenti to reassess the value of proto-American indie director Woody Allen’s work. In his “European Period” – or, more accurately, his “European Financing” period — Allen is, at present, enjoying unprecedented success. “Midnight in Paris” has now, against all odds, surpassed “Hannah and Her Sisters” as Woody’s biggest hit. How the heck did that happen?

Part of this newfound success has to do with Allen’s new Euro audience. His core has held and he has added a new geographical region of admirers. The fresh material – another continent not one’s own – has allowed Woody to break out of those meandering comedies that made up his last unsatisfying New York-based works.

To the question at hand: Is Woody Allen a genius? Woody certainly sets the bar high for himself. He has always measured himself against the heavyweights of art house – Fellini, Bergman, Kurasawa – in the same way that the American novelist Norman Mailer measured himself against Ernest Hemingway. Unlike Mailer, however, who boldly claimed the literary heavyweight throne after Papa’s death for himself, Woody doesn’t think he is in the same room.

Further, Woody Allen doesn’t consider himself to be profound at all. He told The Telegraph recently: “I’m not the great artist that I was certain I would be when I was younger. I still delude myself sometimes and think, ‘Well, maybe I’ll get lucky and something will come out like that.’ But you know, after 40, 41 films, whatever – you start to realize: it’s just not there.”

There might be something to that judgment, harsh though it is. Woody Allen would appear to be something of a genius to the scads of A-List actors and public figures that clamor for even the smallest of roles in his films. And his best films – “Hannah and her Sisters,” “Manhattan,” “Crimes and Misdemeanors” – are all, at the very least, minor masterpieces holding up solidly to multiple viewings. But do those films, ultimately, hold up against, say, Bergman’s “Cries and Whispers”? Fellini’s “8 1/2”? They do not.

Woody Allen is correct, he is probably not a film genius if by film genius one means the equal to Bergman. But Woody Allen’s perfectionism – comparing himself to those geniuses – is admirable and perhaps if not a sign of genius, of near-genius.

Leave your own thoughts on Woody Allen in our comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.

Watch More
Brockmire-103-banner-4

Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

Posted by on

He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

Watch More
Brockmire_101_tout_2

Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

Posted by on
GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

Watch More
Brockmire-Sam-Adams-great-effing-beer

Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

Posted by on

From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.

via GIPHY

It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

Watch More
Powered by ZergNet