Blue Jasmine has somehow bought me back to the reviewers desk, I have found myself thinking about it in so many different ways I hardly know where to start on this review.
There is something about this movie that reminds me of Citizen Kane. Woody is missing the great revolutionary cinematography of Wells, but the subject matter the breadth of it is similar.
What first grabbed me is that it seems to lead you down a certain Hollywood track, and you feel comfortable being gently careered into this area because of Midnight in Paris, in that movie Woody willingly filled with Hollywood stereotypes, it was romantic and intellectual.
He fiddled with the genre a little in Midnight in Paris, put a few neurotic characters in there and added his style, but it was essentially a Romantic comedy. Because Woody is so unique it added an interesting intellectual slant on what was becoming a dry and boring genre of film.
Now with Blue Jasmine, we get lulled down that Hollywood stereotype avenue again, this is a riches to rags Dickensian tale. So often in a movie like this we are given a sort of moral lesson, usually there is a ‘I fell from grace but now I am a humble person’ shtick.
But this isn’t like that; Jasmine, doesn’t come back (spoiler) -she doesn’t recover or become a ‘good’ or ‘humble’ person after loosing everything. Things don’t work out, she goes mad, reality sucks.
In some ways the movie is even more interesting when you imagine the sort of people that Woody Allen has known in his life, and the things he has seen.
Just like Citizen Kane/ William Hearst connection I suspect there is a real life Jasmine or maybe even many Jasmines that Woody has known and watched fall from grace.
I sensed a touch of schadenfreude in this movie maybe even of malice from Woody, but I wasn’t sure it could just as easily been a misplaced impression.
Woody has made so many movies in his life, I think it’s fair to say that unlike someone like Steven Spielberg movie making hasn’t been easy for Woody, he has made plenty of flops and has made mistakes in his filming and acting career and even in his own personal life.
It’s like all the past experiences of Woody is culminating swelling up, building up a complex fabric for his scripts and movie making, he is starting to test these genres and change them in a way that reflects his own life. He has after all experienced these things like Jasmine, had massive failure and felt and been through those things.
This movie could make some people uncomfortable or it could be interpreted in different ways, already after reading some reviews this seems to be exactly what is happening.
Movies that can be interpreted in many different ways are like a wine with multiple flavors, they are to be kept and savored and age well with time.
This is most certainly one of those very fine films.