One of Woody Allen's best for sure. I loved it!
Stardust Memories takes us to a visit into the mind of a film director. I don't know if it's meant to be some kind of autobiographic work but sure resembles us of some aspects of Woody's life.
It's a very well written story, as Woody always has accustomed us. Intelligent and funny, presented to us in a non-linear way and show us the present mixed with past flashbacks.
The black and white photography is beautiful and the performances are great, especially Woody's.
I had long since watched all of the movies that are considered to be Woody Allen classics. Stardust Memories had been sitting on our DVR for almost a year before being dragged into the light on Saturday night. This is one of the rare movies where you are either going to get what Allen is trying for or you are going to think that he is a self-indulgent ass.
As you probably know, Allen's movies mirror the events, paranoia and philosophies that make up his personal life. Stardust takes all of this to another level. Allen plays himself in this movie, even though he goes by a fictitious name. The movie is about him making a movie, although little is said about this upcoming movie. The reason for this is that his life is the movie is his life is the movie... you get the idea. I know that this sounds rather bizarre but it actually works. The film has a duality to it that I found fascinating. In one sense, Allen the person directly addresses the various difficulties that he has in his life - relationships with women, trying to find meaning in his work, critiques of his work, among many others. But the flip side of all of this is that there is still a traditional movie going on at the same time so you get to see all of these struggles in action, as you would in any other Allen movie. Maybe that is the best way to describe the film - it is almost like you had the director's comments audio track running along with the film. I really got a better feel for his struggles as an artist.
Reading the reviews of this film on rottentomatoes.com has been interesting. The comments range from "misunderstood masterpiece" to "garbage". At times the movie went to silly extremes to allow him to make his point, but I think sometimes that was the larger point. There is an amazing depth to his work but you shouldn't always take it so seriously. It made a lot more sense once I watched Felini's 8 1/2.
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Not my favourite of Allen's films. The brief alien encounter provides the most coherent and funniest moment. The rest felt a bit too all over the place.