Deconstructing Harry

Bomb Rating: 

Is there anyone on the planet Earth who hasn't had enough of Woody Allen? I mean, for the love of Jesus. There's a controversy brewing over whether or not his latest film, "Deconstructing Harry," is autobiographical. It seemed apparent enough to me: Allen plays a low-life, self-hating, struggling writer. The only thing that's obviously fictional is Allen managing to have sex with women -- specifically Elizabeth Shue and Kirstie Alley -- who didn't once call him "daddy."

However, Allen has come out and said that the movie is not autobiographical, even though his protagonist, Harry Block, is his most despicable yet. The movie features Harry, a successful novelist, dealing with the ramifications of writing a book based on his own life. Eventually, this leads to intersections between Harry and his fictional characters. Harry's a man who lives successfully in his own mind, but not in the real world.

Certainly, Allen's portrayal of himself bedding beautiful, adult women gives hope to the rest of us since we're likely not nearly as neurotic or grotesque. However, with the addition of this movie to his filmography, one can't help but notice Allen's consistently twisted view of women: The younger ones are goddesses, while the older ones -- the ones with the guile to work and vote -- tend to be manic bitches.

In the bitch category is Block's ex-wife, Joan, played by Kirstie Alley in her now-signature pig-screeching manner. I could step on a small dog and get less screaming from it than your typical Alley performance. There's also a bit with a hooker in this one, not unlike "Mighty Aphrodite," yet more proof that Allen's films long ago descended into an exhausting exercise in manic repetition. It's time for the Woodster to try something different, maybe a high-budget action flick: "Neurosis at 35,000 Feet" or something.

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