Saturday, 7 July 2018

Scoop

Yes, I know. It's another Woody Allen crime comedy. But they're just such fun!

And in this one, Allen expertly casts Scarlett Johansson (for a second time, following Match Point) in the overenthusiastic role of a wide-eyed girl chasing an ideal, previously filled by Diane Keaton in Manhattan Murder Mystery, Love and Death and others, as they combine perfectly in a near-formulaic manner.

The two leads play off each other beautifully and as Allen feeds her with quips and one liners aplenty she's given the scope to throw back the banter, resulting in a comedy duo act that feels well polished and is a delight to watch.

The plot is complicated, as usual, but fluffy, and involves Allen playing around with life, love, crime, death, the afterlife and distaste. Allen plays a magician playing a London theatre and Johansson a student journalist visiting, a recently deceased journalist appearing from the grave with a Scoop of a story regarding murder and a privileged British family which needs infiltrating. All the strings are pulled together in a did-he-didn't-he chase orchestrated within a wrapper of fun and games, but more importantly, the super chemistry between the leads.

It's a gorgeous film which delights. By this stage Allen is getting on a bit and he sometimes appears to stumble, but it's smartly wrapped into the act of the ageing magician. And seeing him driving a Smart Car on the wrong side of the road is a gem!

Highly recommended.

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