Apropos of nothing, the autobiography of Woody Allen


You only need to worry about that 1/3 of the recent autobiography of Woody Allen, and is dedicated to the rough and non-existent affaire 1993 with Mia Farrow and their adopted daughter Dylan. But perhaps it was inevitable, and even if no process has ever occurred because of the inconsistency of the accusation that we all know, on the Allen hit the perfect storm and it is not over yet. No matter the innocence, is enough for the infamy and the great director is over in the book of pariah, or better ‘semiparia’, as he says in this book, since he had the good fortune to have lawyers and money to resist the destruction of the media. There has never been a process, because no process could have only been accusations of the family of Farrow, and the grits that came. “Kafka’s somewhere smiling,” writes Allen.

The book that was to be published by the group Hachette Book was boycotted because of the pressures of Ronan Farrow, the only natural son of the two, is the author of success of the same Hachette and the enemy of the father, among other things, Mia Farrow said a few years ago that Ronan is not the son of Allen but of Frank Sinatra, just to complicate things even more. At the end of the autobiography, is printed from the smallest Arcade Publishing, and in Italy by The Ship of Theseus; but the annoyance continued, and his last film, A rainy day in New Yorkit has never been distributed in the United States, and the next The Rifkin”s Festivalshot in Spain, is likely to have the same fate. Allen recalls the main thesis of Guilt by accusation, a book by Alan Dershowitz, a well-known american lawyer: in some cases a person is guilty just because they are accused of something. Derschowiz states that with the movement #MeToo “the atmosphere changed dramatically. The Evidence was no longer important […] the presumption shifted from innocence to guilt”. Allen is accused on the basis of simple statements of being a dirty old man, and the harasser’s adopted daughter.

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Probably all born after the discovery in 1992 of the story, with Soon-yi Previn, adopted daughter of Farrow and conductor of the orchestra André Previn, the discovery, of course, shocking, and, from here, according to Allen, part of the epic revenge of the Farrow, the allegations of harassment. Certainly the relationship between him and Soon-yi already from the age difference (she is 70 ’and the director of ’35) is not very conventional but could be in the order of things; however if we choose as observation point of the present, perhaps we would be less judgmental, in fact, the two are married and in love for more than twenty years and have adopted two daughters now go to university. Really strange that the judges have entrusted in adoption the two girls to an individual accused of being an ogre.

In Apropos of nothingyou always find the usual and the immortal Allen; the love of New York and, after leaving the famous penthouse in Central Park, for his last house in the Upper East Side; the hatred of the countryside (Allen reminds us of theurbis amatorem of oraziana memory); his dissatisfaction with the artistic like not being able to ever get to the top of Bergman or Fellini, that he never directed such a masterpiece as Bicycle thieves. And then where we put it Manhattan and I and Annieand Match Point? We find in these pages, his famous pull on the life , death and our place in the universe, that could be good right in the margin The world as will and representationSchopenhauer: “we men are simply programmed to resist to the death. The blood is stronger than brain. There is no logical reason for which remain attached to life, but who cares what that says to the brain. The heart says: have you seen Lola in a mini-skirt?”

In his autobiography, are diffuse reflections about his film and the making ofon a certain disregard for the formal facts of the film and with the almost absolute to the content, and stories to tell; and also spread the reviews laudatory about actors and actresses (Diane Keaton, and Mia Farrow all). Allen does not neglect to report the sensuality, as well as the skill of the actresses, with whom he had to do, and observations that have made jump on the chair Dwight Garner, the puritanissimo reviewer The New York Times (a newspaper that has embraced against all logic, the thesis of Allen is a pedophile). In the review, of unparalleled stupidity, Garner complains about the assessments of Scarlett Johansson, called “sexually radiottiva” but also “exciting, intelligent, quick and witty”, things that in reality we all think, and thank you Allen for bringing this once again reminded.

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The most beautiful and poignant are those dedicated to the childhood and youth in Brooklyn. The parents of the the working class jewish days at the Midwood Theater where Allen escapes from reality through the cinema, the fanciful and hilarious resolutions to make the baro or the magician, the scopertà of Manhattan and Broadway, the radio and the programs of Bob Hope, the popular culture, with Batman or Flash Gordon or Mickey Spillane instead of Julien Sorel, or Raskol’nikov, in short, the New York of the ‘50s: “I discovered the art when marinavo the school and I needed to be in a warm place: the museums were free or cost little”. Decades later, going to a street where there was a cinema frequented by the young, it is demolished in the expectation that was built as a condo and recalls that “once sitting right there in the middle, we were transported in foreign cities that swarmed of intrigue, in the deserts crossed by romantic bedouin, in ships, trenches, buildings, and indian reserves. Soon a building was to be erected on the ruins of Rick’s Café”. There is nothing to do, “la forme d’une ville/ Change plus vite , hélas!,que le coeur d’un mortel” (Baudelaire).

Here are the cinema, like dream, escape, bright, surrogate of the enemy par excellence, the reality. Not in the case Allen cites the Blanche DuBois of A streetcar named desire”I don’t want reality, I want magic”. From modest Prosperous shakesperiano writes: “I have always despised the reality and yearns for the magic. I tried to be a mage, but I have discovered that I know how to manipulate cards and coins, and not the universe.” Think of the famous bench in the Riverview Terrace on the 59th Street in Manhattan, well, that bench has never existed and, contrary to what you read on the Internet was put there by the production only the time that famossima scene between Allen and Keaton.

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Among the most interesting pages are those about the beginnings of his career as a formidable battutista. The joke, the witz high art and comic genius, even here the masters admired and honored: Groucho Marx, Mort Sahl to name a few. Allen starts very early to write for magazines and for television (at the age of eighteen earn triple of what you earn its parents); in the below will perform in the premises and, in the show popular current affairs such as the The Tonight Show Johnny Carson and becomes one of the most well-known stand-up comedian of New York and of the United States. Here would be served, and there are explanatory notes on names, places and facts that remain mysterious to the reader, p.and. what is “the war castellamarese” that at a certain point, is evoked by the author? Fortunately for us, there is Wikipedia. Finally, the transition to the cinema, where, however, did not only make people laugh but to invent stories of men, women, and idiosyncrasies.

At eighty-four years, the director has written her a personal apology to the socratic: ”At my age, I have now little to lose. Not believing in an afterlife, I don’t see what can change if I am remembered as a director or as a pedophile. I only ask that my ashes be scattered near a pharmacy”.

No. Long and glossy old Woody Allen.



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