Jewish Journal

Blue Jasmine

by Joy Bennett

July 28, 2013 | 9:51 pm

Theatrical release poster

Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen's new film, is in my estimation one of his finest later films.  Again he explores, as only Mr. Allen can, the intricacies of a women under the pressure of a major life change, with humor, pathos, and style. Cate Blanchett is sure to receive Oscar attention for her performance, which is brilliant.  She carries the film, yet the supporting actors, especially but not exclusively Bobby Cannavale (who also appeared in HBO's Boardwalk Empire) are also excellent.  This role will secure Ms. Blanchett's position as one of the major actresses of her generation.  Alec Baldwin is also pitch-perfect as her dubious ex-husband, but one can't help but wonder if he has made a career out of playing his own charming, seductive self.

Like Blanche in A Streetcar Named Desire, Cate's character teeters toward madness as she desperately tries to rebuild her life after loosing everything.  It demonstrates how sexuality, desire, desperation and social climbing sometimes converge with disastrous yet comic results.  At times heartbreaking, funny, and luminescent, here is one of the finest directors of our time playing at his craft with confidence and ease.  Excellent and appropriate music as well.

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Joy Bennett is a writer living in Santa Monica, California.  She is the author of Under a Quarter Moon, a poetry and short story collection; and is a contributor to the...

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