Vicky Christina Barcelona (Woody Allen) -2008

A better title for this movie would be "Everybody Loves Javier" (Bardem) who gives the best performance.  Penelope Cruz won the Oscar for her performance as the psychotic ex-wife but I just do not get it.  Her part was small and she mostly spoke Spanish which seemed to be natural for her.  Barcelona is a beautiful city and the Woody's cinematography is excellent again but the story seemed to move slowly.  Vicky (Rebecca Hall) is a Catalan scholar and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) is a failed film-maker.  The American women are spending a summer vacation in Spain without obvious sources of income.  I understand that Woody was under contract to make a movie in Spain and this one filled the bill.  Although I do not pretend to know how young women are affected by Latin lovers, my advice to them would be: "Get over it!" [JAM 3/17/2011]

["In style, Vicky Cristina is almost more of a French movie.  When I first saw it, it reminded me of the French films I saw in the late 1950s and early 1960s ... Right now I'm doing a group of pictures with some Spanish people, not necessarily in Spain.  There's no contingency about where I do them.  I could do a veritable United Nations tour of filmmaking.  You know, sometimes it can be a lifesaver from a financial point of view ... I have to consider it from a livability point of view.  Can I exist three months on lard and gruel?  But it hasn't been that bad so far, so I can go someplace nice.  People in Italy have spoken to me, and in Sweden ... South America." Conversations With Woody Allen - February 2009]