Friday, 20 February 2009
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
To see Woody Allen's latest offering last night. In Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Allen is back on form after some lacklustre British films (though I did quite enjoy Scoop when it surfaced on BBC2 recently) with a typical tale of tangled lives and loves, leavened with witty and sophisticated dialogue, and a fair few amusing situations. Allen has brought together a cracking cast, with Rebecca Hall and Scarlett Johansson playing two American girls, Vicky and Cristina, on holiday in Spain, who both fall for the charms of Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem), a local artist with an on-off relationship with his violent ex-wife, Maria Elena, played with manic brilliance by Penelope Cruz. The backdrop of Spain, particularly Oviedo, gives the film extra charm. Above all, this is a vindication for those of us who have stuck with Allen through thick and (very) thin. If you liked Hannah and her Sisters or Manhattan, you'll love this.