Scoop is another Woody Allen trip to the city of London; this time following the story an American journalist/student and a magician (played by Allen himself). The film is a great example of the bizarreness of Woody Allen films.

WHAT HAPPENED?

After being given a tip by a dead man, Sondra (Scarlett Johansson), a young journalism student, discovers the Scoop of the century and alongside the help of narcistic magician Sidney (Woody Allen) sets about investigating Peter Lyman (Hugh Jackman) the son of a lord.

THE GOOD

The film is a typical Woody Allen film on so many levels and brightened by the performance of Allen himself; in a typically Allen role. For me what makes the film so enjoyable is its bizarreness; much as he does in Midnight in Paris and Purple Rose of Cairo; Allen creates a perfectly realistic universe and then adds a totally unexplained & surreal element that is unexplained, unexpected and yet somehow makes total sense. Although the supernatural element does not occur as often as in other films it is this moment that captures interest in the audience and also drives the narrative forwards.


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This film balances a line between film-noir and comedy in a perfect manner; it never sinks as low as being a farcical parody yet it does not take itself too seriously. Whereas last weeks Cassandra’s Dream didn’t seem to no its tone this film does and sticks to its line near perfectly.  The best thing of the film is however Woody Allen’s performance. Allen simply does what he always does when he acts; he stammers and rambles on about death and Judaism; when you add in that his character is a magician and is constantly doing magic tricks the entire character is perfect.

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THE BAD

Sadly, I think the film is let down by Scarlett Johansson’s performance; in this film she is playing a much more toned-down role than from what we are accustomed to from her. She is a student who rambles in an Allen-esque manner but there is just something unbelievable about her; especially when she has a romance with Hugh Jackman.

ALLEN FACTOR
The film is a typical Woody Allen film and scores highly on the Allen scale gaining 7.75/10 with the only aspect missing being a lack of real nostalgic references; although the plot focuses around aristocrats there are very few art and literature references (by Allen standards).

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FINAL THOUGHTS

Scoop is a thoroughly entertaining film and therefore I award it four Woody which when added to the Allen scale give it a total of 8/10.

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