Vicky Cristina Barcelona Review
I just got back from watching Woody Allen‘s new movie, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. This film really has not gotten a lot of press coverage, I haven’t really seen any ads for it, but shows like Filmspotting (subscribe here), The Totally Rad Show (subscribe here), along with the always trusty Roger Ebert and James Berardinelli have also tried to bring this film into the light of day.
I try and make a point of seeing any new Woody Allen film I hear about and this is definitely one of those times where I feel completely rewarded for this policy. This movie is wonderfully wild, especially as the film progresses and yes Scarlett Johansson is insanely beautiful and sexy, but with this movie, I can see specifically what it is that Woody saw in her to have her star in 3 of his last 4 films, while I liked Match Point more than this movie, I thought she gave her best performance here as Cristina. Johansson has a restless, exuberant innocence that is wonderful.
I don’t always like the use of a narrator and I didn’t always like it in this movie either. It was useful for explaining which Spanish landmarks were being visited and which artists and sculptures were being admired throughout the film, but it got a bit annoying when, for example being told that the characters were tasting chocolates at a local chocolatier, while on screen, we can see Rebecca Hall, Scarlett Johansson and Javier Bardem walking in and eating those chocolates.
It has been a long time since I saw a film with Penélope Cruz and her sensuous and wild performance reminded me of the first time I ever saw her, back in Abre los ojos (the role that also inspired Tom Cruise to remake that film into Vanilla Sky with her starring in it as well) and it shames me to think that I still have not gotten to see her in Volver up to this point! I NEED to put that film on my list of things to see on dvd now.
I think this is a wonderful movie and I just loved it, especially with all the photography featured in the film, I love photography and I wish I could get my shots to come out looking as good as some of those taken in this film. Thanks to VickyCristinaBarcelona.Wordpress.com for the above pic.
On a side note, throughout the film, I kept identifying with the Doug character (Chris Messina), no matter how much I wanted this to not be so, while at the same time, I wish I acted more like Juan Antonio in my dealings with women and relationships.