Film Review – Blue Jasmine (2013)

Blue Jasmine - post

Title – Blue Jasmine (2013)

Director – Woody Allen (Scoop)

Cast – Cate Blanchett, Sally Hawkins, Alec Baldwin, Bobby Cannavale, Peter Sarsgaard, Louis C.K, Michael Stuhlbarg

Plot – Falling very far from her life of being a wife to rich yet criminal husband Hal (Baldwin), socialite Jasmine (Blanchett) must move to San Francisco and live with her adoptive sister Ginger (Hawkins) and begin her life a fresh all the while dealing with her increasingly unstable mental state.

Some people, they don’t put things behind so easily”

Review by Eddie on 10/02/2014

For a movie that has garnered much attention solely for it’s leading lady Blue Jasmine is a movie that delivers the goods, for a movie however that will stick in your memory it’s a movie that will more than likely be forgotten about before you can say “Bobby Cannavale again steals the show”.

Director Woody Allen is experiencing some sort of career renaissance of late with both this and his previous film Midnight in Paris producing some of his best critical and box office receptions of his long and questionable filmography. Allen is a director that seems to want to direct the film as fast as possible and you get that feeling with Blue Jasmine. The film has a structure of present and past scenes that at times can feel like they are intruding on each other. From flashbacks you understand that Jasmine’s ex-husband Hal (Baldwin) is a complete sleaze but you don’t get a great idea on why Jasmine feel in love with the man or what motivated her through the marriage other than the fact that she didn’t mind the odd bit of jewellery. Once in the present with a mentally cracking Jasmine as our crux the film plays out in an enjoyable Shakespearean tragedy type of way with Cate Blanchet displaying a range of emotions that showcase her acting ability.

In a role that was tailor written for Academy voters (many who have probably been a Jasmine or Hal at some stage in their life) Blanchett delivers in one of her most challenging roles to date. It’s a role that is not particularly likeable or even sometimes wholly believable but it’s a performance that you want to watch no matter what is occurring. Special mention must be made here of Bobby Cannavale who in the small role of Chili, Jasmine’s adopted sister’s boyfriend makes the most of Allen’s at times witty and snarky script. It’s another performance in a career which after the peak of his guest role on season 3 of Boardwalk Empire confirms Cannavale as one of the most charismatic actors working on screen today and a performer that is crying out to be given a meaty leading role.

Nothing more than a strong quality Allen film filled with a jazz infused soundtrack, dialogue heavy scenes and neurotic leads, Blue Jasmine is a movie that has been more strongly received due to a quality central turn from Blanchett and a story that many could relate to in the high class world of New York and Mrs Blanchett should start on her acceptance speech now in readiness for Oscar night, hopefully a speech with less mocking of Matthew McConaughey.

3 and a half scene stealing Cannavale’s out of 5

17 responses to “Film Review – Blue Jasmine (2013)

  1. Nice work Eddie, I didn’t really find myself enjoying this film but that may have more to do with the fact that Woody Allen did his job well. Or, perhaps Cate Blanchett. She irritated me to death, as did everyone else around her. I typically like Woody Allen fare, but this one I could take or leave.

  2. Totally with you on this one Eddie! Felt the film struggled to reach the standards set by its actors. Blanchett was terrific in a tough role, as were both Sally Hawkins and Bobby Cannavale. Nice review!

    Adam.

  3. Good review Eddie. It’s supremely well-acted and finally goes to show us that Woody Allen exceeds rather well when he just lets his ensemble do the talking for his script. Not the other way around.

    • I really do find Allen way more miss than hit though, something about his film making style that doesn’t sit well with me and for some reason I think his overrated as a screenwriter. But hey who am I to judge the man!
      Eddie

  4. Nice Review! I have not seen it yet, but I must admit I am incredibly excited to get a chance to view any Allen movie. Interesting analysis, though. Sounds like the cast alone makes the film worth viewing.

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