You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger review

Woody Allen presents another of his typical roundelays of well-to-do characters experiencing troubled love lives and thwarted desires, back in sunny and picturesque London again.

Anthony Hopkins and Gemma Jones play a long married couple, now separated. To get over her depression, she pays regular visits to a clairvoyant (Collins) to mask her feelings of loss, while he hooks up with a pretty tart (Punch)  many years younger and with a great figure to give himself a new lease of life. Meanwhile, their daughter (Watts, sporting a flawless British accent) is frustrated that her novelist hubby (Brolin) is not earning money. She takes a job as an assistant to art gallery owner Banderas and develops a crush on him. Brolin espies beautiful Freida Pinto through the window of the flat opposite and becomes infatuated with her. His new book has been turned down by his publishers but, luckily for him, his writer friend (Bremner) has been killed in a car crash, or so he thinks, so he passes off his pal's new manuscript as his own in a bid to seek success. Complication obviously ensue for these poor saps but one never feels sympathy for them. Nor interest.

While the cast are all competent enough their roles never ring true. One remains unconvinced by their dilemmas - a flaw that has beset all of Allen's London-set capers (Match Point, Scoop and Cassandra's Dream) and he once again eschews any laughs to make this frothy confection wash down agreeably. A few gags would have helped enormously. But alas, all we are left with is a trite tale that doesn't add up to much. An unpersuasive affair devoid of charm. 

Official Site
You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger at IMDb

Stuart O'Connor is the Managing Editor of Screenjabber, the movie review website he co-founded with Neil Davey far too many years ago. He likes all genres, as long as the film is good (although he does enjoy the occasional bad "guilty pleasure"), and drinks way too much coffee.

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