A young British tennis instructor is desperate to leave his shabby past behind and enter the pristine ranks of high society. When he becomes torn between two woman- one from the world he wants to escape and one from the world he wants to join, a dark psychological match begins in his head.
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I always said ZELIG was Woody’s worst. Wrong! MATCH POINT is truly a dog of the doggiest type. Is it meant to be funny or is it shite from someone out of ideas? Unrealistic stilted dialogue & dreary unrealistic plot. Clearly he can't direct English actors. They seem to be pretending to be American actors pretending to be the sort of English characters Americans who've never met an English person imagine they must be.
Nobody mentioned the brillant use of opera music throughout the movie on different levels: The historical Caruso recordings serve as commentaries to the narration, the visits of the opera and musical peformances are care- and meaningfully placed parts of the action and the large excerpt from Verdi’s »Otello« stresses the dramatic climax.
Yes, it prominently shows off its influences, but I have always felt that this is coming from a different place. The ruminations on the role of luck in one’s life are interesting, and Woody uses the tennis metaphor to set the audience up in the final act. He uses the opening freeze frame of a tennis ball lingering over the net to toy with the audience in a way that would make even Hitchcock smile.
a recycled plot with various plot changes used to create a romantic thriller that leads to the downward spiral of a man trying to fix his mistakes using all the wrong means. also the soundtrack is killer, and the way Allen basically makes a film that is a reaction to Crime and Punishment is amazing--if only he hadn't made the C&P references/reactions so deliberately obvious.
I had been avoiding this very enjoyable Allen movie because everyone kept telling me it was about tennis. Something about the performances irks me, but other than that it is a nasty, sordid little tale that recalls Crimes & Misdemeanors in terms of just how dark it is. 3/5... Might boost it to a 4.
It's such a departure from his contemporary, star-studded, city-enfatuated stuff that those adornments don't bog down the actual filmmaking. Instead, Allen is able to breathe, and so are his characters and the plot. Surprisingly, city and culture seep in, as they must.