Crimes and Misdemeanors

Woody's wonderful combination of comedy, thriller and existential drama, the first of his films heavily influenced by the famous nineteenth century novel Crime and Punishment by Dostoïevski. The Landau plotline has the same moral dilemma as Dostoïevski's novel (can a man go on with his life after he has been responsible for the murder of an innocent person?), but with a few changes in the storyline. Landau didn't commit the murder himself (he asked his brother to take care of it) and his character is not a Russian orthodox, but a man with a Jewish background.

Raskolnikov (the murderer from the novel) had to rediscover his God ('without God everything is allowed') and give himself in - all this by means of penance, but the Judaic God is a more erratic one: he doesn't reward the righteous ones, he only punishes the criminals, and sometimes he even fails to do just that (think of the Nazis who got away with it). So Landau may hope that God will turn a blind eye to what happened.

In fact it's the  lead character from the second plotline, played by Woody himself, who is 'punished'. He's a serious film maker of intelligent documentaries (his latest work is about a Jewish philosopher talking about the paradoxes caused by our imperfect God image), who's asked to do a documentary on his brother-in-law, a successful producer of TV shows, and also a man he despises. It all goes wrong: he is fired as a director, falls in love with an unattainable woman, and ... it's his brother-in-law who gets this woman in the end.

One of Woody's finest films, full of great lines and observations (about love, sex, religion, etc.). All actors are fine, some outstanding (notably Alan Alda as Woody's pompous and shallow brother-in-law), and yet this is Landau's film: forget Ed Wood, this is by far the best performance by the man from Mission Impossible. He is top-billed and has most screentime (along with Woody himself) so it's odd that he was nominated for an Oscar in the category best actor in a supporting role.



FX Acteren Sfeer Originaliteit Totaal
9 8 7 8

Aanraders in overeenkomstige genres, volgens Boobytrap:
- Annie Hall (humor / drama : 8.5)
- Verlengd Weekend (humor / drama : 7.5)
- De Laatste Dagen van Emma Blank (humor / drama : 7)
- Juno (humor / drama : 7)
- Thelma & Louise (humor / drama : 7)


Hoe beoordeelt Boobytrap categorie humor eigenlijk?
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Hoe beoordeelt Boobytrap categorie drama eigenlijk?
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Crimes and Misdemeanors
Crimes and Misdemeanors
Crimes and Misdemeanors
Crimes and Misdemeanors




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