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Crimes and Misdemeanors


Roger Davidson

Crimes and Misdemeanors
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In this movie Woody Allen takes a look at murder, lust, greed and the guilt that surrounds such acts. The film is two separate stories in one. Martin Landau stars in the more somber of the two tales, as a married optometrist who wants to end an affair with a flight attendant (Anjelica Huston), who has become enraged because Landau will not leave his wife for her. After a series of threats from Huston to end both Landau's relationship with her and his wife (Claire Bloom), he sets up a deal with his estranged brother (Jerry Orbach), who has connections with the mob and who suggests a hit on Huston.

This tragic tale is perfectly balanced by a more humorous one, as director Allen plays an unhappy filmaker, who wishes to woo his attractive producer (Mia Farrow) while he makes a film about Farrow's egotistical boss (Alan Alda). Both stories end up taking tragic turns, though Allen's predicament is a lot funnier than Landau's. Drama and Comedy couldn't have been more beautifully put together, and by none other than Allen himself. Landau, Farrow, Allen, Huston and (surprisingly) Alda give wonderful performances and the story is a real grabber. No other film of Allen's has caused so much furor and debate among his fans as this has.

My Rating = Four Stars

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