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Movie Review: You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger

Alternate Title: Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places

Story: If you are a Woody Allen fan, like me, you will sit through this formulaic latest film of his and wistfully remember the good old days when his films were guaranteed to make you laugh, think and admire his genius and literary plenteous. Sadly, this one does not cut the mustard.

His signature themes are front and center. A disillusioned writer who has lost his edge. A wife who seems more like a harpy than a supporter. An older man who faces the grim reaper and decides to do something to turn his life upside down and in the process creates a wake throughout his family. A ditsy gold digger, a charlatan of a fortune teller and a few other eccentric characters thrown in the mix.

Are there laughs? Yes - but they are few and far between. Should you see it? If you are a fan of his four decades of celluloid output and that compels you to see it - you can wait for the small screen.

Watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs1Iwp9_ePI

Acting: Antonio Banderas as Greg is understated and fine as the smarmy art dealer. Josh Brolin as Roy did not mesh for me. Anthony Hopkins as Alfie was fine but slipped into his Hannibal Lector character every now and then. Gemma Jones as Helena was perfect. Freida Pinto as Dia was innocuous. Lucy Punch as Charmaine was funny. Naomi Watts as Sally did not pull it off. Pauline Collins as Cristal was terrific and Zak Orth is the know it all, narrator.

Trivia: Woody Allen was born December 1, 1935 in Brooklyn, New York. As a young boy, he became intrigued with magic tricks and playing the clarinet, two hobbies that he continues to do today.

Predilection: I am a Woody Allen fan and have seen all of his films.

Critters: None

Food: Surprisingly little for a Woody Allen film.

Sex Spectrum: Lots of fooling around but none in front of the camera.

Blatant Product Placement: Corona

Soundtrack: Woody-esque.

Opening Titles: Nearly all of his films start and end with white-on-black credits, set in the Windsor typeface, set to jazz music, without any scrolling.

Visual Art: Allen's characters always live a charmed life in their hearth and home.

Theater Audience: NYC is Woody Allen's base. The first showing on a Saturday was crowded.

Weather: Surprisingly lovely for London.

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Squirm Scale: 0

Drift Factor: I drifted.

Predictability Level: High

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: No

Big Screen or Rental: Rental would be fine.

Length: 90 minutes

LOBO HOWLS: 5