Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
New SWITCHCast episode out now! Click to listen to reviews of 'Game Night', 'Finding Your Feet', 'A Fantastic Woman', 'Winchester' and more.x
review, Café Society, Café, Society, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Jesse Eisengerg, Kristen Stewart, Steve Carell, Parker Posey, Blake Lively, Woody Allen, Drama, Romance film rating

CAFÉ SOCIETY

★★★

A TALE OF TWO CITIES

THEATRICAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Charlie David Page
16th October 2016

Welcome to part number 47 in Woody Allen's series on romantic films of the world's cities: 'Café Society'. This time around he kills two birds with one stone by taking on both Los Angeles and New York in the same story. Sure, we're taken back to the swingin' 1930s, but is this yet another - and much less interesting - 'Midnight In Paris'?

Bobby (Jesse Eisenberg, 'Now You See Me 2', 'Batman v Superman') moves from Hollywood after growing bored of New York. Lured by the glitz and glamour, he instead finds Tinseltown shallow and vein, and is ready to throw it all in - until he meets Veronica (Kristen Stewart, 'Clouds of Sils Maria', The 'Twilight' Saga), who prefers the name Vonnie. The two hit it off, and after much persuasion from Bobby, start a relationship, but their love is torn apart by stronger forces. Jesse moves back to the Big Apple to manage his brother's high-end nightclub, and succeeds liberally. One night, he meets another Veronica (Blake Lively, 'The Shallows', 'The Age of Adaline') - a stunning blond (and recently divorced) bombshell. When she falls pregnant the two are married and live happily - until Vonnie comes back into Jesse's life. Is he over her, or does the flame still burn for his first true love?

SWITCH: 'CAFE SOCIETY' TRAILER

What is lovely is to see both LA and New York in a new light. Whenever we're in Hollywood, it's literally glowing - everything's coloured with a sunny orange hue - while New York is bathed in blues. Accompanying this is cinematography by Vittorio Storaro ('Apocalypse Now', 'Last Tango In Paris') as close to film as you will find these days with digital cameras.

However, that's the sum total of the film's assets. Eisenberg is a bit flat, and there's very little charisma between him and Kristen Stewart. Blake Lively does what she does best - playing her usual flirtatious self - yet she's relegated to a bit part with little to do other than portray the shadow of the original Veronica. The only one who seems to be having much fun is Steve Carell, yet his character is so unlikeable, so it's difficult to fully enjoy his performance.

Eisenberg is a bit flat, and there's very little charisma between him and Kristen Stewart.

There's no disputing Woody Allen's ability to create nostalgia. The attention to detail to return us to the 1930s is refined - costumes, hair, make-up, sets and locations all get the gold star treatment. It's a shame the same level of detail couldn't be placed into the writing of the script. What we have, in the end, is barely more than boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy meets other girl with the same name. It's not complex or nuanced, and the crackling Woody Allen wit of the past is dialled well down.

For a movie that spends a good portion of its time looking back at the golden age of Hollywood, 'Café Society' insists on being a very anti-Hollywood film. There's no closure, not everything resolves itself, and there's no fairytale ending. You could argue that these are typical Woody Allen tropes, yet I was considerably dissatisfied with what we are presented with. You can't be sold a film about romance without the chemistry. Similarly, you can't leave a story unresolved when its flimsy structure is the only purpose for the film's existence. This is no 'Midnight In Paris'; in fact, it's far from it. If you're keen for some true nostalgic Hollywood, best wait for 'La La Land'.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: 20/10/2016
RUN TIME: 1h 36m
CAST: Jesse Eisengerg
Kristen Stewart
Steve Carell
Parker Posey
Blake Lively
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Woody Allen
PRODUCERS: Letty Aronson
Stephen Tenenbaum
Edward Walson
www.cafesocietymovie.com
cafesocietyfilm
cafesocietyfilm
cafesocietyfilm
Game Night - A gleefully inventive checkmate comedy caper
TRENDINGGAME NIGHTA gleefully inventive checkmate comedy caper
The Square - Society from a darkly hilarious perspective
TRENDINGWIN THE SQUARESociety from a darkly hilarious perspective
Goodbye Christopher Robin - The true story behind a childhood classic
TRENDINGWIN GOODBYE CHRISTOPHER ROBINThe true story behind a childhood classic
Shot Caller - Nikolaj Coster-Waldau's brutal crime thriller
TRENDINGWIN SHOT CALLERNikolaj Coster-Waldau's brutal crime thriller
Detroit - Kathryn Bigelow's gritty slice of American history
TRENDINGWIN DETROITKathryn Bigelow's gritty slice of American history
Alliance Française French Film Festival - Celebrating 29 years of French cinema
TRENDINGWIN ALLIANCE FRANÇAISE FRENCH FILM FESTIVALCelebrating 29 years of French cinema
© 2011 - 2018 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Disclaimer | Contact Us