Blue Jasmine, Or They Make These Things Called Movies Now

Well, not in Saskatchewan. But you know what I mean. And I saw one at the Southland last night — Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine. It was pretty damn good. Blue Jasmine is a comedy one watches without laughing, slack-jawed and horrified at characters who careen off one other like brain-damaged chimpanzees driven mad from medical experimentation.

The film’s about Jasmine (Cate Blanchett), the ex-wife of a multimillionaire sociopath whose shady business dealings end with his dramatic arrest by FBI agents in the middle of New York. After some slow-to-be-revealed turmoil (understatement), a broke Jasmine flies to San Francisco to live with her blue collar sister, who knows a lot of decent but socially unskilled men. Things proceed efficiently downhill from there.

Jorge, whose opinions about movies actually matter, reviewed it recently and here’s what he had to say:

I can’t say enough about Cate Blanchett’s work. We get to meet her character in better days via flashbacks. Hints of her delicate mental state are dropped subtly, anticipating the full-on breakdown ahead. After being missing from the scene for a couple of years, Blanchett returns in fine form. She is clearly the frontrunner for next year’s Academy Awards.

Darn tootin’. My only quibble is Jorge’s insistence that this is a drama. Nope. Blue Jasmine a horror-comedy in which deranged characters are clinically vivisected live onscreen for our entertainment. Nabokov fans should love this one. It’s fantastic, twisted and and laugh-uncomfortably-on-the-inside funny. Go see it.

Author: Stephen Whitworth

Prairie Dog editor Stephen Whitworth was carried to Regina in a swarm of bees. He's been with Prairie Dog since May 1999 and will die at his keyboard before admitting his career a terrible, terrible mistake.

One thought on “Blue Jasmine, Or They Make These Things Called Movies Now”

  1. It’s funny you bring up whether the film was a drama or comedy. When my partner and I saw it, within the first 15 minutes of the film there was a guy laughing hilariously out loud at scenes I, and apparently everyone else in the audience, found quietly amusing insofar as they displayed an ability in people to point out their own faults in others. The guy was laughing hard enough that I tried to search him out in the darkness to see if he had something else going on there. Apparently not. He also stopped laughing after about the first 15 minutes.

    When we left the film I asked my partner if she noticed the guy and if she thought that maybe he figured since it was a Woody Allen film it had to be hilarious and he better start laughing loud early, and then quietened down when it didn’t turn out to be funny. We wondered if he figured out it was a drama, or just figured Woody Allen had lost his touch. We found that hilarious.

    I’m with Jorge on this one, it was a drama. Horror is a different genre and so is comedy but I agree it does make you “laugh-uncomfortably-on-the-inside.” Except for that one guy who laughed loudly on the outside and then, I hope, became uncomfortable.

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