We watched Annie Hall sort of out of the blue, and all because Bob Dylan’s “Just Like A Woman,” started playing. It made me think of the scene where Pam (Shelley Duvall) describes the song to an uninterested Alvy (Woody Allen). Then that made Chris think of the scene where Alvy talks to Annie (Diane Keaton)’s psychotic brother, Duane (Christopher Walken). Talking and laughing about those scenes were enough to make us just watch it right there.
I’ve seen Annie Hall a lot but not in a while, probably not since college. It was a movie that totally blew me away the first time I saw it and I still discover new things whenever I watch it because so much is packed in. Alvy and Annie’s relationship makes such perfect sense while somehow making absolutely no sense. Alvy’s kind of a dick, Annie’s kind of an airhead. But their relationship just feels real; even if it doesn’t seem logical, they have a chemistry that seems very realistic.
Annie Hall is filled with perfect one-liners (“Don’t knock masturbation, it’s sex with someone I love,”) and awkward situations (Alvy sneezing into a couple’s cocaine). Even though I clearly didn’t experience 1970s New York, Annie Hall seems like such a great snapshot of that time and place. I always sort of think of Annie Hall and When Harry Met Sally as similar, at least to me because they’re both two of my favorite romantic comedies. But Annie Hall is the they-don’t-end-up-together version, but it’s not at all sad. Just like everything else in the movie, Annie and Alvy’s relationship ending just feels natural. It’s really pretty beautiful.
I know I first saw this movie in high school but I’m glad we watched it again because I think I understood a lot more than I did back then. However, the best scene in this film to me, and it was really the only thing I remembered before we watched it again, is the one where Christopher Walken shows up as Annie’s brother. The deadpan comedy he brings is out of this world funny and Elizabeth brought up a good point, that he really is just being Christopher Walken in those scenes but I guess since he wasn’t really a big star at the time, it was new to everyone. Even today though I found this to be my favorite part of the movie.