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Whatever: Allen's fllm doesn't work. 

Woody Allen's new movie Whatever Works is so bad, it's a kick in the crotch to his fans.

Sometimes, positive rapport with a filmmaker's work can dissolve into the feeling of a kick in the crotch, thanks to a particularly insulting offering. Woody Allen wrote the script for Whatever Works in the 1970s for Zero Mostel (the lead is now played by Larry David), but it's an affront in any decade. Woody has earned first-name recognition for so often displaying razor-sharp perception and a vibrant depth of character that borders on the intimate and personal. As a result, his least thoughtful efforts---of which Whatever Works is one---make you feel like a loved one has just called you stupid. Exaggerations aside, it's disappointing when Woody fails to find a kernel of authenticity in his characters or stories. The film could be a fantasy about the transformative power of love, but lands as a collection of ignorant caricatures of Southern people, forgiving women and misanthropes. If Public Enemies is an interesting failure, Whatever Works is an egregious one.

Whatever Works
Rated PG-13 (MPAA) · 92 min. · 2009
Official Site:
Director: Woody Allen
Writer: Woody Allen
Producer: Letty Aronson and Stephen Tenenbaum
Cast: Ed Begley Jr., Patricia Clarkson, Larry David, Conleth Hill, Michael McKean, Evan Rachel Wood, Henry Cavill, John Gallagher Jr., Jessica Hecht and Carolyn McCormick

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