Saturday, July 4, 2009

Mighty Aphrodite

Dear readers, my self-education, in terms of films, must be going quite well. Indeed, this is my second film by Woody Allen, a movie director that I gladly discovered a few months ago. While I doubt that this is the best film by Allen, it still remains a sophisticated, funny (without being excessively vulgar) and entertaining as a comedy. All in all, Mighty Aphrodite proves that comedies do have their place at the Oscars provided that they're well done.

Lenny (Woody Allen) and Amanda (Helena Boham Carter), a couple of New York, adopt a boy named Max. When he finds that Max is brilliant, Lenny tries to find out his son's birth mother. As he advances in his research, Lenny finds out that her name is Linda Ash and she lives in New York. Moreover, to his disgust, he also learns that Linda is a prostitute and that she works in porn movies under the pseudonym of Judy Cum.

Therefore, in a world that seems twisted, Lenny will struggle t talk Linda out of being a sex worker, so to speak. As Lenny tries to change Linda's life, he has conflicting thoughts. While Allen uses a chorus reminiscent of a Greek tragedy, one never feels that his/her time is wasted. In fact, the Greek chorus is well used to develop the plot (in a very serious way) and even to expose us to the film's sweet humour. Besides, needless to say that the well-chosen cast really owns the film, especially Mira Sorvino.

Nevertheless, while the film is absolutely entertaining (duh, it's a film by Woody Allen!), many of you may have a few reservations to express about the script. In fact, the script is clumsy in that while it focuses on Allen's character to help Linda to get out of the skin trade industry, no parts of the film put on display Lenny's hesitation to reveal to Linda that he has her son. Of course, some who liked the film a lot would probably tell you that as a whole, Allen's character is looking for Linda's wellbeing and that many things are suggested in the very superficial exploration of that aspect of the story.

Finally, even though I doubt that Mighty Aphrodite is the best film from Allen, I wasn't dismayed by the final result. Besides, for anyone who's looking for a feel-good comedy that can be taken seriously, I'd gladly recommend this one for you.

Rating: 4/5

Origin:USA (1995)
Length:95 minutes
Screenplay:Woody Allen
Director:Woody Allen
Starring:Woody Allen, Helena Bonham Carter and Mira Sorvino

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