A little tale of sound and fury signifying nothing.
A very diverse and interesting family, bound together by troubles and a crazy vibe, You Will Meet A Tall, Dark Stanger introduces us to Helena (Gemma Jones) and husband Alfie (Anthony Hopkins) have a daughter Sally, an aspiring gallery owner (Naomi Watts) who is married to Roy (the great Josh Brolin), a sturggling writer waiting for publishing news on his newest book.
Both marriages have problems. Alfie faces a crisis when he realises he’s become old, Roy’s struggle with writing his book has put on strain on his and Sally’s relationship, and Sally becomes emotionally more distant towards her husband and closer to her boss Greg (played by Antonio Banderas). The intertvining storylines keep you entertained, but some of the characters (possibly due to short screentime) remain shallow. Allen’s films never lack of acting talent, but often depth in drama. This is his style though, and some people prefer the aloofness of story, a depiction and followup of events unraveling rather than flamboyant emotion and flare. Still the story has some interesting quirks and twists that surprise you, but would’ve served the story better if it were focused on some of the characters more profoundly.
Set in London, Woody Allen‘s first film without his confidant Charles J. Hoffe, the film has a strange pace and in one way seems like its played out in fastforward, and in another it feels to last for ever. With high points (the intriguing relationship with Brolin’s Roy and the red-dressed girl across the street Dia (played by the gorgeous Freida Pinto)) and lows (I completely lost interest in Jones’ storyline around the time she started visiting the ‘fortuneteller’) the film follows the traditional Allen pattern: it has a voiceover, it’s shot in the traditional Hollywood way, and even though Allen has made his latest films in Europe, they almost always seem still to be placed in New York, and it’s pace and style.
Woody Allen’s stories are always very much his style, and you either love it or don’t really care for it. I didn’t really mind. For 104 minutes, I was entertained, at had a couple of laughs as well. And it’s always enjoyable to watch Hopkins, and this really was kindly sarcastic for him I believe. A fine enough film; You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger is a film to watch when you want something light, and not textured to keep you entertained but not astouned. In theatres in Finland now!
Here’s the trailer :