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Annie Hall

Year: 1977
Director: Woody Allen
Writer: Woody Allen/Marshall Brickman
Cast: Woody Allen, Diane Lane, Paul Simon, Shelley Duvall, Christopher Walken, Sigourney Weaver, Jeff Goldblum
The movie that more or less announced Woody Allen's distinctive talent to the world, and as such his most lauded film (also the path he stayed more or less upon until he started to go off the rails around the time of Small Time Crooks).

It epitomises the on again, off again nature of relationships among New York neurotic upper classes, a life and world Allen inhabits beautifully.

His pleading jabbering, constant self-examination and neuroses were introduced to the world and they loved it as his character - a TV writer, falls in love with kooky Annie Hall (Lane) but they just can't get it together. Maybe because of their insecurities, maybe because they're incompatible - either way you're in for a treat that plays out like a Best Of compilation, featuring all Allen's trademarks.

It's territory he inhabits most comfortably and does the best; the foibles of love and relationships, what a mess we can make of our lives because of them and what a mess they can make of us.

To think it snatched Best Picture in 1977 from under Star Wars' nose and Allen wasn't even there - never having attended an Academy Awards because of a jazz gig.

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