I’ve written a lot about Woody Allen over the last few years and I’m sure I’ll be writing about him for many more years to come. He doesn’t always hit the mark, but when he does, he hits it better than just about anyone. Case in point: 2011′s smash hit Midnight In Paris. It may well be in my top five favorite of Woody Allen’s many films. Part of this has to do with my love of Paris in twenties (and the fact that pretty much everything mentioned in the film was something I studied in college) and partly because of the experience I had when I first saw it. I had just moved back to San Francisco (like, literally THAT DAY) and I went to see it with my roommate and one of my good friends (who was visiting from Florida!) and it had been raining and the showtime we wanted to go to was sold out so we had to wait an hour in the lobby and it was the most perfect experience I could have asked for. There’s a lot of things to write about with this film, but I’ve decided just to focus on a few facets of it that I really love. The film was nominated for four Academy Awards, winning one: Best Art Direction, Best Original Screenplay (won), Best Director and Best Picture. The other films nominated for Best Picture in 2011 were: The Descendants, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, The Help, Hugo, Moneyball, The Tree of Life, War Horse and winner The Artist.
Nancy: Can. . .can you, like, define the meaning of love?
Fielding Mellish: What do you. . .define. . .it’s love! I love you! I. . .I want you in a way of cherishing your. . .your. . .your totality and your otherness, and. . .and in the sense of a presence, and a being, and a whole coming and a going in a room with grapefruit, and. . .and love of a thing of nature in a sense of not wanting or being jealous of the thing that a person possesses.
Nancy: Do you have any gum?
Boris: The question is: have I learned anything about life? Only that… only that human beings are divided into mind and body. The mind embraces all the nobler aspirations, like poetry and philosophy, but the body has all the fun. The important thing, I think, is not to be bitter. You know, if it turns out that there IS a God, I don’t think that He’s evil. I think that the worst you can say about Him is that, basically, He’s an underachiever. After all, you know, there are worse things in life than death. I mean, if you’ve ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman, you know exactly what I mean. The key here, I think, is to… to not think of death as an end, but think of it more as a very effective way of cutting down on your expenses. Regarding love, heh, you know, what can you say? It’s not the quantity of your sexual relations that count. It’s the quality. On the other hand, if the quantity drops below once every eight months, I would definitely look into it. Well, that’s about it for me folks. Goodbye.
Alice Tate: I’ve experienced a double blow. A husband who loved me once, I know that he no longer does. And a man I met recently and developed strong feelings for now doesn’t seem to want me.
Dr. Yang: Love. Love is most complex emotion. Human beings unpredictable. No logic to emotions. Where there is no logic, there is no rational thought. Where there is no rational thought, there can be much romance but much suffering.
Alice Tate: Gee, I. . .I feel like I’m adrift, like I’ve been cut loose. A while ago I had a routine life, with feelings I understood. A husband, a home.
Dr. Yang: Mrs. Tate had illusion of happiness. Upon closer observation, not very honest husband, not very honest with self.
Alice Tate: I’m frightened.
Dr. Yang: Freedom is frightening feeling.