Shadows and Fog - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Shadows and Fog Reviews

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August 2, 2016
"- It's true. Everybody loves his illusions.
- Loves them. They need them. Like they need the air."
½ January 5, 2016
Divertida pero poco interesante y con un extraño tono, aunque bien actuada y con las habituales buenas líneas de diálogo típicas en Allen.
½ December 27, 2015
Here's why adapting really short bits of writing into feature films is fraught with difficulty. Allen's short piece "Death" is a funny little parody of Kafka. It would also only account for about 15 minutes of screen time. Adapting it for the screen 20 years later, Allen pads out the material with tons of references to other films, genres and filmmakers. The result is an uneven and slow hodgepodge of material that wears out it's welcome before the first act is over.
Super Reviewer
November 29, 2015
Lesser Woody seems to be trying to evoke Pandora's Box but while it's filled with gifted performers they are the wrong ones to fit into the style he is seeking. A miss.
½ November 12, 2015
Could have been good, but it fell apart in the end. Someone must have been pushing a deadline, but the cast was star studded. Crazy to think how many famous actors there were.
½ November 11, 2015
Woody Allen's first attempt at murderous themes after "Crimes and Misdemeanors" deserves decent praise with this mystery comedy-drama.
½ November 2, 2015
Drama and laugh out loud funny go hand in hand in this typical Allen fare which is familiar in all but setting. The vast array of dizzying characters and the offbeat plot and atmosphere make this a delight from start to finish.
September 10, 2015
Chock full of stars, Shadows and Fog is Woody Allen's homage to German expressionism films such as M (1930) or Mad Love (1935). Too bad its completely goes nowhere, offers few laughs, and is not satisfying when it comes to resolution or anything else.
May 10, 2015
Style over substance can work, but not here.
½ March 11, 2015
Mia Farrow Replaces Diane Keaton In An Attempt To Create Another Manhattan/Annie Hall...Even Tho I Find Keaton Annoying, Farrow Is Worse. Woody Is His Usual Neurotic Self. Quite A Few Big Names (Maddona, Jodie Foster, John C. Reily, Kathy Bates, Malkovich, Cusack, Will H. Macy) Doing Small Bits Also Keeps It Vaguely Entertaining.
December 31, 2014
He does quality circumcisions. I've seen his work.

A serial killer is on the loose in a small European village and the villagers cannot stand it anymore. Kleinman is a reluctant hero, but when the villagers approach him about bringing the killer down, he tries his best to stay out of it. When the murders start hitting close to home, Kleinman partners with some strange characters to find the killer and bring him in.

"I'll find a place at the house."
"The house?"
"The whore house."

Woody Allen, director of Bananas, Midnight in Paris, Annie Hall, Manhattan, Scoop, Alice, Radio Days, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Zelig, and Crimes and Misdemeanors, delivers Shadow and Fog. The storyline for this picture is very interesting and fun to watch unfold. The character development and evolution was not on the level of other Woody Allen pictures. The cast was amazing and delivers perfect performances. The cast includes Allen, John Cusack, Mia Farrow, John Malkovich, Madonna, and Lily Tomlin.

"Why would any man want identical whores?"

I grabbed this off Netflix because I thought a Woody Allen mixed with horror genre film would be cool. It was fun and I was impressed by the cast, but I wished Allen did more with the characters as a whole. I do recommend seeing this picture, but it isn't an all time great Woody Allen gem.

"You cringe in front of him like a worm."

Grade: C+/B-
December 29, 2014
Woody Allen's tribute to Film Noir is quite messy
½ November 9, 2014
La más flojita que he visto de Allen.
½ November 1, 2014
After seeing who was starring in this movie, I was really looking forward to it, but once again, Woody Allen's constant babbling and silly humour just didn't work for me. The whole town is scared to leave there homes because there is a serial killer on the lose and they gather together to try and capture him. They form different gangs, who don't get along and all the way through the film, Woody Allen is completely left out of the loop. With such an intense situation, Allen's character is going around spurting out these annoying one liners which gets on everyone's nerves, including mine. On top of that, you've got the squeaky Mia Farrow whose in a troubled relationship and ends up sleeping with Cusack for loads of money. I liked the banter with the prostitutes, played by Kathy Bates, Jodie Foster and Lily Tomlin, but the storyline gets a bit weak after a while. It would have been much better if it was a whodunit because you see who the killer is, way to early in the movie. Anyway, I think it was a waste of a great cast and I personally thought that Allen and Farrow spoilt the movie. Disappointing!

I was expecting Madonna to have a big part in this film, after seeing her face all over the poster, but she's only in one scene. You do see a few famous people along the way, like John C. Reilly and William H. Macy, but I doubt that you will notice them. Judging by the box office takings, I wasn't the only one that thought that this movie was a bit weak. Basically, for a suspense thriller, there really wasn't that much suspense or thrilling happening, so it has to get the thumbs down from me.

Budget: $14million
Domestic Gross: $3million (Terrible!)

I recommend this movie to people who are into there Woody Allen movies about a town of people trying to capture a serial killer. 3/10
½ June 28, 2014
A weaker Woody Allen film.
½ March 11, 2014
I pretty much enjoyed "Shadows and Fog". It doesn't really have a lot going on, it's primarily just the events of one foggy night as several people try to track down a serial strangler, while Allen is unwittingly roped in without ever figuring out his part of the plan, and eventually being accused himself. I love the cinematography of the foggy night, and I had a few laughs. I think I just enjoy being with a Woody Allen film, even ones that are generally regarded as weaker entries in his long canon. It probably helps that I really like German Expressionism as well.
February 27, 2014
A terrific atmospheric Woody Allen film that I thoroughly enjoyed & made me laugh many times.

The story of Woody's character being waken up in the middle of the night to work with a vigilante group after a serial killer.

Filled with beautiful atmosphere & shots & the use of the fog is fantastic. Woody is fantastic as his usual Neurotic Self & this film is a real riot. Like many of his films very over the top but enjoyable.
October 25, 2013
An underrated Kafkian picture from Allen; paying great tribute to the cinema of German Expressionism of the 20s and 30s. Great fun...
September 1, 2013
This is widely regarded as "minor", at best, Woody Allen and me not being a Woody Allen completist, this wasn't in my top list of priorities of films to be seen. But a friend of mine is a huge fan and highly recommended it to me. And he was right. This is delightful and funny parody/tribute to German expressionist films, specifically Fritz Lang and G.W. Pabst. It is gorgeously photographed and the mostly modern sounding dialogue at the backdrop of a period piece actually works quite well. I will agree that this is one of Woody's more underrated pieces.
August 8, 2013
This is one of Woody Allen's smaller, lesser-known films, and to be honest, I can see why. Made in between the similarly slight Alice and the more troubling Husbands and Wives, this is one of Allen's mannered homage films, which, while often interesting, usually don't end up as memorable as his more original movies. Interiors was his take on Ingmar Bergman; Stardust Memories was his Fellini movie; and this one is his tribute to German Expressionism and the writings of Kafka, and it particularly reminded me of Fritz Lang's M. While Allen certainly gets the visual aspect of the homage right, the actual content of this movie is often not especially distinctive.

The movie begins promisingly enough, with a clerk named Kleinman (Allen) being woken in the middle of the night somewhere in 1920s or 1930s Eastern Europe by a posse of men out to catch a local serial killer. The idea of Allen hunting for a serial killer is pretty funny, and the movie does get some laughs whenever it focuses on his storyline, but unfortunately it spends a lot of time on a second, less interesting plot. Mia Farrow plays Irmy, a circus performer who runs away from her home after she finds her clown husband (John Malkovich) cheating on her with another performer (Madonna, oddly wasted in only one scene). She is taken in by a group of street-smart, down-to-earth prostitutes (including Lily Tomlin, Jodie Foster, and Kathy Bates), and unexpectedly finds herself mistaken for one by an eager young man (John Cusack). The cast all give decent performances, though many of them end up reduced to only a scene or two.

When the movie focuses on Allen's character, it manages to get some easygoing, if predictable, laughs from the tension between Allen's neurotic persona and the supposedly high-stakes business of catching a serial killer. The ending, featuring the sorely under-used and under-appreciated comedic actor Kenneth Mars as a magician, is particularly kind of delightful. But the scenes focusing on Farrow's character are almost never funny, and don't really have much of a dramatic arc, either. They feel brought in from a different movie. While Allen effectively used the comedic and dramatic halves of his earlier Crimes and Misdemeanors to comment on each other, in this case the two strands of the plot just kind of sit next to each other without any very compelling reason to be together. While the Farrow storyline isn't terrible per se, it just doesn't feel like it needs to be in the same movie with the other material.

Visually, the black-and-white movie makes its relationship to German Expressionism quite clear, almost to the point of overkill, actually. There really is quite an emphasis on shadows, but they're so omnipresent and so dark that for much of the movie you can't really see the actors' faces. While Allen is certainly capable of using black-and-white and shadow artfully (see: Manhattan), in this movie he overdoes it, and it's distracting just how dark everything is all the time. The set design is nicely evocative, but again, you can hardly see much of it. Overall, this isn't Allen's weakest movie (I would still say that would be You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger), but it never feels like it reaches its full potential. It's occasionally amusing and has a distinct visual identity, but the story ends up falling short of Allen's better movies.
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