Classic Movie Watchlist 2018

Classic Movie Of The Week: Hannah And Her Sisters (1986)


Starring: Barbara Hershey, Carrie Fisher, Michael Caine, Mia Farrow, Diane Wiest, Maureen O’Sullivan, Max Von Sydow, Woody Allen, Daniel Stern

Director: Woody Allen

From Thanksgiving to Thanksgiving, over two years, a woman’s current husband falls in love with one of her sisters, while her ex husband falls for her other sister.

Of course, as in all Woody Allen films, there’s a lot more too it than that. It’s a film that looks at relationships, people’s neuroses and hang ups, and gently makes fun of the everyday. It has a really great cast, with Allen taking more of a backseat in this film, and letting the sisters played by Mia Farrow, Diane Wiest and Barbara Hershey to shine as the central trio. I guess that if your life is about supporting your sisters both emotionally and financially, and those two sisters are seeing your husband and your ex, all you can do it laugh. But there’s something about Woody Allen films that I find eternally off putting.

He’s a good director and film maker, and some of his films have been quite ground breaking, but I also find them a bit creepy a lot of the time. Watching this film, I felt that Hannah was a door mat, her sisters were users, and her ex-husband played by Allen is a bit creepy with his self obsession and hypochrondria.

But Allen’s films are well respected and there’s something about looking at the weaker side of humanity, the human frailty and haplessness, that fascinates him and that he does fairly well.

I found this film fairly hopeless and hard to find amusing, which I think really just means that I’m not the intended audience. But that said, the performances here are all really good, the situation is winding and interesting, and it’s nicely shot. There’s plenty of drama for drama lovers and for those who find Allen’s cynical humor amusing, then you’ll like this. It’s one of those films where I feel like I can see why it’s a good film, academically, and why people like it, but it never really moved me.

See It If: you like Woody Allen films, this is one of his most famous from his most respected film making period.


4 thoughts on “Classic Movie Of The Week: Hannah And Her Sisters (1986)”

  1. Allen’s movies give me a gag reflex even though I love the people in them. I saw him live in Vegas over 50 years ago and he was really funny. I didn’t get a creepy feeling from him then, but I’d been drinking and shell-shocked from marrying someone I shouldn’t have.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha! I love how you put this story. 😂 Bless your heart. Yeah, I’m kind of the same really. Once you see that he’s icky, you can’t un-see it. Sorry about the shell shock though, don’t we all fall for the wrong person sometimes!

      Liked by 1 person

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