Saturday, 14 May 2011

Annie Hall

At the start of the year I did a little contribution to Matt Pringle's Film One Zine which has just been released. The zine sees a number of illustrators (including awesome pals eleni kalorkoti and richard sanderson) draw something based on their favourite film accompanied by some words on why its their favourite. I went for Annie Hall as my all time favourite (though it had stiff competition from Together, Grey Gardens, The Shop Around The Corner, and Manhatten to name a few).
  Anyway for thems thats is what I had to say about why Annie Hall is my favourite. Apologies for dodgy writing...have you ever tried to explain why you love something? So flipping hard....
"Explaining why I love Annie Hall seems to be a little difficult. Of Allen's other films 'Manhattan' is more beautiful to look at, 'Sweet and Lowdown' is lovelier and 'Play it again Sam' makes me laugh out loud more often and yet it is 'Annie Hall' that has quietly taken up residence in my heart and shows no intention of relocating.
   A large part of it is, of course, emotional; it's a film that found me at exactly a point in my life when I could fall in love with it wholly and completely; as a teen tentatively discovering life beyond the walls of a Devonshire secondary school. Annie and Alvy were so strangely recognizable to me (despite their presence in 1970s New York and mine in afore mentioned Devonshire school) probably because they are so incredibly well drawn by Allen. It didn’t matter that at seventeen my romantic entanglements were slightly less complicated and my only contact with neurotic Jewish comedians was limited to a close friend with Allen-esque aspirations, the relationships on screen felt real to me and when you’re seventeen that’s pretty important. As someone who was (and still is) prone to over-analysis I rejoiced in finding characters whose over-thinking eclipsed mine ten-fold. I laughed at references I couldn’t possibly understand at that stage and laughed again a year or two later when I finally understood them (I’m thinking of McLuhen in particular). My heart swelled with joy as Diane Keaton and Woody Allen chase live lobsters across a tiny kitchen with, what looks like, genuine laughter in their eyes and I cried at the end, caught up in the heartbreaking ordinary-ness of Annie & Alvy’s inevitable break-up. I was doomed from the start. I was always going to adore this film.
Years after my first viewing I have a fairly healthy handful of films that I would call my favourites but Annie Hall was the first film I ever loved (and I mean really loved rather than fancied the lead star of).  Nowadays I watch it for comfort, for the familiarity. I guess it feels like it’s in my bones, as first loves often are."

You lot! Favourite films? Go Go Go!


littlebirdbigcity said...

Oh gosh, I love Annie Hall so much. It's up there with my favorites. I agree wholeheartedly with what you wrote, so lovely. I'd have trouble pinpointing my all-time favorite movie, but "In the Mood for Love" definitely makes the top 3 for me. The music, the colors, the subtle touches, the heart ache, I fall for it every time.

lemonade said...

this is so, so great. (i have been following your blog for awhile but never commented!) you listed a lot of great movies up there, and most of them are favourites of mine too. i used to work at a video store so this list changes all the time but...:

beautiful losers
la collectionneuse
cria cuervos

(all of these i recommend!!)

Steph said...

Hi Lizzie,

I recently found your blog when looking for some authors that were closer to home than all the americans blogs in my dashboard. Coming from Edinburgh, its fun to see some of YOUR Edinburgh.

Youre not just an extremely talented illustrator: In this post alone its clear to you that you are both an extremely talented illustrator but also a wonderful wordsmith, full of connection with your subject!

This made me smile!


Fiona Purves said...

Harold and Maude. I just love it.

Verity Keniger said...

I just want to double up on Cria Cuervos because it's wonderful... it's tricky to find but me thinks I have it somehere...

Felice jin said...

I love this film!!
and lovely your blog :D

uve said...

Annie Hall is also my Allen's favourite, I also had a post on my blog some months ago