Sunday, June 10, 2012

Love and Death

In early 19th Century Russia, neurotic peasant Boris inadvertently becomes a war hero during the French invasion, wins a duel against a noble cuckold, and becomes involved in an assassination plot against Napoleon with his distant cousin, whom he greatly longs for. "Love and Death" is a rambling but funny early Woody Allen film. With the expected constant barrage of one liners, the film is given cinematic weight by the wonderful visuals and a score made from the works of Sergei Prokofiev. Diane Keaton, in her third pairing with Woody and last before they made "Annie Hall", is fun as the flaky object of his desires reciprocate the sentiment. "Love and Death" is enjoyable and considerably light considering the material. In it you can see Woody getting his footing and planting the seeds that would sprout into his subsequent masterpieces.