September (dir. Woody Allen – 1987) is a very still film. Not sedentary, but still. It seems like it should be a subtle film due to the way it is shot with slow pans, few cuts, and soft dialogue. However, most discussion is either very expository (the character Peter says, “I want to kiss you” and Stephanie responds, “You can’t – there are too many problems”) or meaningless chit-chat. There are the usual Allen themes of uncertainty and the creative struggle, but this film just feels like the wrong way to present them. Of Woody Allen’s films, this is probably the most skippable I’ve seen.
A lot of the aspects just don’t seem to be completely developed. For example, I don’t feel invested in any of the characters, though I think this is partially because the dialogue seems like it’s supposed to be natural but doesn’t quite do it. The entire film takes place around a single location, Lane’s (Mia Farrow’s) house in the country, similarly to a newer film that I reviewed fairly recently. The more I think about it, the more I think the plot is a reflection of the house where it takes place: pastel, soft-toned, flawed, and not entirely memorable.
Arbitrary song of the day: Kraftwerk – Hall of Mirrors