22 September 2003 | Wizard-8
Something that falls far short of succeeding!
American-International Pictures sure tried to make this ANNIE HALL-inspired movie they picked up to distribute come across like the real Woody Allen movie in their advertising campaign; the poster for the movie depicted Steinberg in glasses and Sarandon with her hair tucked under a boyish cap - even though they only appear as such for a brief time in the movie, the rest of the time with the glasses and cap missing! It also makes the movie appear to be about a shy and somewhat nerdy man falling in love with a misfit woman. Instead, it's about a more confident and successful guy falling in love with a woman who is more normal in her behavior than you'd think.
I wish they had made the movie that the advertising seemed to be suggesting. You can't warm up to the characters in this movie at all. Sarandon does okay, but her character's written to have some perplexing and frustrating ways of thinking and reacting. Still, she's a lot easier to take than Steinberg; his character and his performance are both utterly obnoxious, with his constant aggressive pursuit of Sarandon and seemingly indifference for the emotional baggage she is still carrying from her previous relationship.
No doubt A.I.P. picked up this movie in one of their attempts to become more mainstream, which they were inching towards in their last years. The tone in this case may have been a step forward, but they also took some steps back with some surprisingly tacky production values. The movie is visually dull, with a look and editing style that seems more fitting for a television movie of the time. (Only the occasional rude word betrays its theatrical origin.) If you get bored (actually, you WILL get bored), make a game by trying to count how many times you can see the boom mike or its shadow.