Wednesday, October 27, 2010


 At first, you'd think she's onto something, especially when Woody steps in. While you expect him to leave, he doesn't. He latches her onto Peter, the ice-cream man. Between these two, the scrawny, lizard-like chap looks suspicious and dare say, exceedingly obnoxious. He definitely seems like the guy behind everything. He goes around planting evidences here and there..and he simply refuses to LEAVE! But wait a sec. There's this Peter who's not just an ice-cream man, he's THE whipped-cream-coated Mr. Rich n handsome man in London, who looks like bourbon- pastry, even to a doe-eyed Scarlett Johannson, embodying what you might call in Woody's movies...too much of a good thing. And with the old-school sort of traditional narrative, Woody shows us how he could bend our minds with the same chain of motion that we've been accustomed to over several years.
At the very beginning, Scoop promises plenty of light moments with its quirky lead-characters, the city of London and yes, a turbo-charged classical soundtrack compilation, one that ranges from Tchaikovsky and Strauß to Edvard Grieg! Infact, there's not a single moment in the film that's entirely devoid of a classical-music background, oozing romance and dollops of love. But it's exactly that love which charms our bespectacled Sondra (Scarlett Johannson), a journalism student away from a valuable opportunity- of-a-lifetime scoop in her hands, one that has been hand-delivered to her practically from the grave.
A serial-killer has been on the prowl in London for the past several months. This modern Jack-the-Ripper goes by the name of the Tarot Card killer, strangling several women in London and leaving behind a signature tarot card. Now Peter Lyman is an aristocrat, whose secretary dies immediately after she discovers some facts that lead the murder case investigation directly to Lyman. She meets up with a famed, but deceased newspaper reporter Joe Strombel in a hilariously surreal after-life sequence, on a boat manned by a reaper. She reveals her suspicions to the inquisitive man famous for scoops, turning him back into the blood-hound reporter he was, now with the scoop of the decade in his hands. Desperate to get this news into the papers, he "cheats death" a number of times and comes into contact with our Sondra through an American small-time magician, Sid's "dematerialiser". A thoroughly smitten Sondra ventures to investigate Peter Lyman (Hugh Jackman), who falls for her beauty the very first time he sees her. Seeing where this is going, Sid has no option but to stay close to Sondra for her own "protection".
Scoop, I muct say is the third most visually striking movies of Woody's, after Vicky, Cristina, Barcelona and Matchpoint, both also starring Scarlett. The narration in the form of a dramatically undercover, amateurish investigation occurs at a manic pace, providing us with a multitude of incidents that might provoke us into falling for Sondra's theory, which might be a good thing. But the same when applied to the course of a man being smitten by a woman, moving on into declaration of love, engagement, etc.. kind of ruins the entire character of Peter, making him look stupid (and I must say Mr. Jackman being one of the finest-looking specimens of his species brings a bad name to men in general(?))
As low a chord as Scarlett Johannson strikes with her passive expressions, she makes up with her wholesome, gorgeous appearance and her bespectacled, girly chatter. Together with Hugh Jackman, these two look like what scientists should keep in mind when they decide to preserve human DNA for cloning the human race in future. But even these two actors are offset with the presence of the least appealing man in all of hollywood, probably because he sleeps upside down to supplement that massive brain of his, and his mouth too.. This lizard-like man might seem like he's high on something while he stammers his way across his lines, but the mere fact that he's Woody Allen, turns his fluid motions into an acting class.

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