Movie Review: Match Point

Typically I'm going to only review movies that are truly independent or that are produced with new technologies such as HD video, but I saw Woody Allen's new film "Match Point" yesterday...

This was a really good film. His best in years. Not a comedy though, not at all. It's very similar to one of his earlier films (and one of my all time favorites) "Crimes and Misdemeanors".

The story follows a former tennis star Chris (played by Jonathan Rhys-Meyers in a star making role) and his affair with his brother-in-law's former fiance' Nola (played by the ever consistent and great Scarlett Johansson - has she ever been bad in any movie?).

I'm skipping the entire setup to the story and just getting to the juicy stuff (go see the movie to fully understand). Their affair starts off innocent enough - Nola has had an argument and is upset and Chris sees this and tries to comfort her and it begins - a great scene in a downpour of rain in the English countryside. From there things only get worse - or better depending on your point of view.

Chris is married and living a double life while seeing Nola. He constantly tells her he's going to leave his wife and be with her - and she believes him. But Chris has no intention of ever leaving his wife. They're trying to have a baby and plus she's loaded and so is her family - not to mention he works for his wife's father. Nola slowly unravels and starts to act irrationally calling Chris at home and on his mobile phone at all hours of the day. His wife gets suspicious, but he assures her everything is fine and he's just having problems at work. But everything is not fine. Nola has just informed him she's pregnant.

From here the story gets very dark. It's a character study in love versus lust. Nola says she's going to tell Chris' wife about the affair and the baby if he doesn't leave her immediately. Obviously this can't happen and Chris decides to take matters into his own hands. Suffice it to say, the last act in the film is a nail biter.

Woody Allen does a masterful job at making you like all the characters no matter how good or bad they are, or what evil things they do. You almost want them to get away with it - routing for no one to find out.

The main theme of the movie is "luck" - how sometimes the ball hits the top of the net and bounces forward and you win, or bounces back and you lose (there's a great shot of a tennis ball doing this in the opening of the film - but it freezes and you don't know which way it drops until the end). Hard work is important in life, but often times luck has more to do with what actually happens to people than anything else.

If you're lucky enough to have the time, you'll definitely go check out this film.

-Blake


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Who Am I?

I'm a filmmaker who's produced & directed five feature films including the comedy SPILT MILK (available on iTunes), the new horror/thriller PHOBIA (on iTunes) and the action/thiller KILLING DOWN (which you can buy or rent at pretty much all the usual places).

I also created the Streamy and Webby award-winning web series PINK, which to date has been viewed online around 10 MILLION times at places like YouTube, Hulu, Koldcast and TheWB.com. And speaking of TheWB.com, I also produced and directed an online thriller for them called EXPOSED. It was released summer 2010. And most recently I created a new online sci-fi series called CONTINUUM, which is part of the online indie TV network JTS.tv - Just The Story and NOW available via VOD through indie platform Distrify.

Oh, and I don't shoot weddings. Thanks for asking though.

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