Love and Death (1975)
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Critic Reviews for Love and Death
"Love and Death" has been mapped out as a fully thought-through film. It's a lot more mature than the anything-goes style of earlier Allen movies like "Bananas."
Besides being one of Woody's most consistently witty films, "Love and Death" marks a couple of other advances for Mr. Allen as a film maker and for Miss Keaton as a wickedly funny comedienne.
The picture is packed front to back with many more cheery bon mots -- to say nothing of rollicking slapstick sequences, spoofy film homages and other modes of merriment guaranteed to keep viewers in perpetual guffaw.
Thus early Woody Allen film is quite a funny, often even poignant satire of Russian literature and Russian mores.
Audience Reviews for Love and Death
Let's start here: I have only a passing familiarity with the great Russian novelists, and I've never read War and Peace. However, in much the same way as Monty Python and the Holy Grail, you can enjoy the sheer silliness of the period spoof without being a medieval scholar - and if you have the specialized knowledge, you'll find it even funnier... a possibility that blows my mind, because I'm not exactly sure how this film _could_ be any funnier. Every line of dialogue is a punchline, and by cross-pollinating his stand-up and a satirical historical film, Allen has written the most hilarious script of his career. Throw in a classic performance from Diane Keaton - her chemistry with Allen is magnificent, again - and I knew before I even reached the end: this is my favourite piece by this director. Vintage Woody, and timeless; a must-see.
Possibly my new favorite Allen film. Filled with his signature blend of philoso-comedy, Allen pays tribute to Bergman and Dostoevsky in only the way he can. Full of amazing screwball dialog to boot.
In this early Allen effort his love for the Marx Bros. (particularly Groucho) is worn on his sleeve and the picture is very reminiscent of Mel Brooks' own Twelve Chairs. Throw in a couple of 70's style psuedo-intellectual "conversations" ("I'm overwhelming you with my superiorocity!") and you have a fun, silly, younger Allen, not so impressed with himself yet, easier to relate to. He never finds anyone as good as he to play himself, we know, and his infatuation w/Keaton allows her Dumont-like status beside him.
Love and Death Quotes
|Boris:||If God exists, I hope he has a good excuse.|
|Countess Alexandrovna:||You're the greatest lover I've ever had.|
|Boris:||I practice a lot when I'm alone.|
|Boris:||There are worse things in life than death. If you've ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman you know what I mean.|
|Boris:||The key here, I think, is not to think of death as an end. But to think of it more as a very effective way of cutting down on your expenses.|
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