Another cozy Woody Allen confection, but this one has wit and sass. In the ’20s, an idealistic playwright (John Cusack) mounts one of his plays with backing from a Mob boss. Chazz Palminteri, in a wonderful performance, is Cheech, the glowering gangster who begins to rewrite the play; it turns out there’s nothing he won’t do to protect ”his” masterpiece. Allen isn’t defending the amorality of artists (i.e., himself) so much as he is anatomizing it. He’s saying that art wants what it wants. Dianne Wiest gives a delectable performance as an edging-over-the-hill Broadway grande dame. A-
Genre: Mystery and Thriller, Comedy; Starring: John Cusack, Chazz Palminteri, Dianne Wiest, Jim Broadbent, Mary-Louise Parker, Margaret Sophie Stein, Jennifer Tilly; Director: Woody Allen; Author: Woody Allen, Doug McGrath; MPAA Rating: R
Posted January 17 2015 — 2:22 PM EST
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