Saturday, July 15, 2006

Match Point

Match Point has a really interesting pedigree. Written and directed by Woody Allen, the film co-stars Scarlett Johansson (in an uncharacteristically emotional role), and Jonathan Rhys Meyers who, as Chris Wilton, seems to be both constantly plotting and perpetually plodding.

Match Point isn't Annie Hall. Or Sleeper. Or at all like any other Woody Allen movie you can name. It's in no way a comedy, and not really a thriller. The film is really a look into the role luck plays in the lives of it's characters. Like a tennis ball that hangs on the net for just a brief second, luck can work for or against you. Which side of the net the ball finally bounces--and the effect it has when it eventually lands--is central to the movie's plot and final outcome.

Struggle through the mostly boring first half, because in the end the film is worth it. Johansson acts great and is really sexy, and Meyers has a controlled intensity that never seems to let up. For some reason, Match Point reminded me of old Fred MacMurray movies, like Double Indemnity. **

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