Day 195: Blue Jasmine

71XsC--9m-L._SL1500_Gee whiz. If Blue Jasmine – the 44th movie Woody Allen directed – was any more depressing, it would be Husbands and Wives or Crimes and Misdemeanors.

The film is about a wealthy New York wife (Cate Blanchett), married to a high-rolling financier (Alex Baldwin), a Bernie Madoff-type who suddenly finds herself without a husband, without a home, and without money after her husband goes to prison for fraud.

The dramatic drop from the highest high to a humbling low takes a toll on her life and she more or less snaps, ends up talking to herself.

She moves in with her sister in San Francisco and takes a job as a receptionist in a dentist’s office while she attends school to better herself. The pressure of juggling her job, her class, her sister’s lower-class lifestyle and friends (who hit on her), and her boss (who hits on her), and a growing drinking problem takes a toll.

Her last chance at escaping the downward spiral is meeting a wealthy state department diplomat (Peter Sarsgaard) at a party, inventing a different past, and posing as an interior decorator. The two fall in love.

But when Jasmin’s ruse is discovered, the bottom totally drops out.

Blue Jasmine was nominated for Continue reading

Day 189: Cassandra’s Dream

51ODobl2lfLCassandra’s Dream, the 38th movie Woody Allen directed, boasts a truly stellar cast that includes Colin Farrell, Ewan McGregor, Tom Wilkinson, and Sally Hawkins.

Mom to her sons at the dinner table: And let that be a lesson to you. In the end, all you have in this life that you can count on is family. And don’t you forget it.

And that’s what the movie is about: family.

Oh, and murder.

According to the copy on the back of the DVD case,

Ewan McGregor and Colin Farrell star as working class brothers whose dreams of better lives lead to desperation, greed and deadly betrayal. When gambling debt and an expensive courtship place them in a financial bind, a rich uncle (Tom Wilkinson) offers them an out, in exchange for committing murder.

Yeah. That’s not your typical Woody Allen movie.

By the way, “Cassandra’s Dream” was the name of a horse that pays off that allows one brother (Farrell) to help the other brother (McGregor) buy a used sailboat he has his eye on.

Sally Hawkins, who sometimes plays dowdy mom-type characters in other movies, is a blonde hottie in this one.

Unfortunately, Cassandra’s Dream is a so-so movie that never really becomes a great movie.