What's your biggest cinematic disappointment? Lisa Schwarzbaum answers this and other reader questions

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
October 08, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
Annie Hall: Everett Collection
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What’s your biggest cinematic disappointment?

I recently rented Annie Hall to see what all the fuss was about and absolutely hated it. What’s your biggest cinematic disappointment? –Andrew Plinska
I’m drawn to your question partly in horror — he who hates Annie Hall, Andrew, hates life! — but mostly because of the interesting and insidious notion of cinematic disappointment. I know it’s difficult to approach a movie without ”fuss”: New titles are launched with PR battle plans, big box-office receipts are misread as signs of quality, and lauded older films generate archives of praise. But approaching Movie X with a prove-it-to-me attitude (or, worse, with the notion that it can’t possibly be as good or as bad as you’ve heard) obscures the ability to take in what Movie X actually is. So how about this: I’m disappointed that Woody Allen’s last picture, Anything Else, was such a wan, befuddled iteration of…Annie Hall.

(Got a movie-related question for Lisa or Owen? Post it here.)

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