Blue Jasmine Review: Everything You Expect from Woody Allen and Nothing You Don’t

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There is no doubt that Woody Allen is one of the most celebrated directors of our age. But having directed over 40 films, not every one is a classic.

Then again, Blue Jasmine is more notable than some of the other films he’ll make between Midnight in Paris and his next classic.

As usual, the dialogue is well written and the love feels natural and organic. Having not seen all of his films, I can’t be certain whether Allen has taken on San Francisco as he has New York and Paris, but as usual, he makes you want to visit your local travel agent. These Woody Allen-isms are all present in Blue Jasmine, but it’s missing that last little piece that makes a classic like Annie Hall or Hannah and Her Sisters

The film follows Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) as she relocates to San Francisco to live with her sister (Sally Hawkins) after losing her husband (Alec Baldwin) and all of their money.

Apparently before moving, Jasmine was found screaming in the street after losing everything in her life. She never quite gets to that level from what we see, but Blanchett keeps us on the edge of our seat to see if she will. It’s a wonderful performance that could see some attention come December and January.

But Blanchett’s harrowing portrayal of a former socialite attempting to regain her footing is the best thing about Blue Jasmine. The script isn’t as clever or funny as many of Allen’s more notable films, but it works well enough to make the film entertaining.

Too bad the conclusion leaves a lot to be desired. There are ways to pull off an ambiguous ending and there are ways to ruin the entire film with one. Blue Jasmine unfortunately falls closer to the latter.

But Blanchett’s performance is pretty unforgettable. That’s what keeps this film afloat and assures that Allen’s latest is no To Rome With LoveGrade: B-

By Matt Dougherty

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