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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Scoop's droop: Wolcott, late, better

Better late than never, plus, “Ouch!” Over at his blog, James Wolcott catches Scoop on PPV, which he writes, “sags and drags with the same flaccid verbosity and vague purpose that plagued Curse of the Jade Scorpion, Hollywood Ending, and, lodged at the bottom of the well, Anything Else450dcd02d7be5.jpgThe literate wisecracks that once peppered Woody Allen’s dialogue and put him in the company of quick studies such as Mort Sahl and Lenny Bruce—for instance, the famous joke in Annie Hall about Commentary and Dissent merging to form “Dissentary” (dysentary)—have been replaced by Metamucil gag lines that might have been dug out from the depths of Bob Hope’s vault or Neil Simon’s notebook, and delivered with less spin.” Wolcott also notes “the bizarre repartee between Allen and Scarlett Johansson. She plays a cub reporter and he pretends to be her father… and informs a polite couple… that his daughter has come so far in life, considering she grew up with a learning disability. Later, when the murderer’s identity has been supposedly unmasked… Allen jokes, Well, actually, you were adopted—you’re mother and I were looking to adopt a handicapped child… Learning disability, handicapped–his fibs about her aren’t funny, and they aren’t pertinent to anything in the story. I don’t know what the fuck they are. Perhaps they’re veiled swipes at Mia Farrow, who has adopted handicapped children, because they make no sense in the context of Scoop except as misplayed shots of displaced hostility. Or maybe it’s displaced hostility borne of erotic frustration. In a Washington Post interview… Allen lamented, “One of the great pastimes of my life was eyeing girls in short skirts, and that’s gone. They’re unavailable to you, and in the few cases where you could work your magic, it’s to no practical avail because you can’t plan a future if you’re 70 and she’s 22. So your flirtation life goes, which is a big part of everybody’s enjoyment in life.” By the time you’re 70—and married—you might have matured enough to get over it and reconcile with reality…” Once more, with feeling: “Ouch!”

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