Face It, “Match Point” Isn’t a Great Movie

Ok sometime before the New Year I saw that new Woody Allen movie “Match Point” in a totally packed theater. I was totally looking forward to it having skimmed some very positive reviews. So you can imagine how bummed out I was that it was so…not great. Like really not great. Uuuughhh.

In the movie I felt that Scarlet Johanson would have trouble acting herself out of a paper bag. She seemed uncomfortable and awkward and stiff. Jonny Rhys Meyers was beautiful of course, but too bad the writing and plot were so awful. I thought the best performance by far was given by Matthew “Chasing Liberty” Goode, who played Tom. He he had that wonderful, natural air of entitlement. Brilliant.

But the movie itself was so boring and drawn out. I couldn’t wait until it was over. It was like “Wimbledon” meets “The Talented Mr. Ripley” except not as good as either one of those films. Uuuughhh…

What was up with all those rave reviews? Am I totally missing something? It’s like when people say that Jake Gyllenhaal gave a wonderful “subtle” and “nuanced” performance in “Brokeback Mountain.” His performance was so subtle in it’s wonderfulness that I totally missed it. Now Heath Ledger on the other hand…

Published by Laura

I run The Modern Age.org

21 replies on “Face It, “Match Point” Isn’t a Great Movie”

  1. Gotta say, I can’t agree. I thought Scarlet’s performance wasn’t incredible, but well suited to her abilities. I’ve definitely met people like her character and thought it was really believable.

    In terms of the story, it wasn’t a terribly original plot but it was told really well. Their exchanges were engaging and JRM was excellent. I’m one of the many Woody Allen fans who couldn’t get into his recent films, but this one brought me back in the fold. I absolutely loved it.

  2. Ok. Woody Allen is my hero. Im up to like 24 of his movies i think and soon ill have seen all of them. Just waiting for AMC to start showing them instead of 24 hours of james bond movies…. anyways, I hated this movie. HATED. I wouldnt recommend it to anyone. I hated Scarlett Johanson in it (didnt like her anyways) and I hated Jonathan Rhys Myers even more. I couldnt believe a single word that came out of his mouth. His acting was completely unbelievable. I cant tell if its the script or if he was cast to be pretty or something but he totally stunk up the movie. I totally agree that Matthew Goode was the best part. And whats with Woody Allen totally getting pervy in his old age. I think that was the first time i saw actually “racy” stuff in his movies. Hes pretty PG. Even in movies with affairs and trysts. I know you cant compare 1975 woody to 2006 woody but, dude, besides transplanting rich upper east side people with houses in the hamptons to rich london people with houses in the country, this movie really did not feel anything like a woody allen movie. I am shocked with all the nominations and good reviews its getting. Worst movie ive seen in months!

  3. half an hour in I turned to my womanfriend and said…”this isn’t…”

    she replied “a very good movie? at all? yeah I was thinking the same thing.”

    where the hell is the subtlety? let’s state the thesis: “luck is very important” and then jaw about it for two hours.

    the cops were funny though.

  4. i haven’t seen it and i still really feel your pain. :/ i knew this movie would be up to no good. scarlett johansson’s only good work ever has been ‘ghost world’ and i’m always meh about rhys meyers. as for woody allen he’s really dead, i mean he’s been living in the morgue since 1992 or whenever, so. ‘annie hall’, ‘manhattan’ and ‘crimes and misdemeanors’ thankfully keep standing the test of time, even ‘interiors’!

  5. You are on crack lady.

    I loved, loved, loved this movie.

    And JRM was so fantastic. The entire cast was great. But he really carried the movie and gave one of the best performances I’ve seen a long time in any movie.

    And damn, was it hot! The scene between JRM and Matthew Goode in the beginning was more hot than anything in Brokeback Mountain! 😉

  6. I agree with your points – MA. Scarlet J. was only good when she was doing her angry woman rants and at that I felt uncomfortable with how the viewer is made to feel unsympathetic towards her character. It was awful. Not one smart line of dialog, no humor, and overall a heartless film or heartless commentary.

    Rhys Meyers was excellent and natural, but without decent dialog I agree that Tom was great, with Brian Cox and the mother competing for second best performance. Even Emily Mortimer whose character was dull to the point of being lifeless she may as well have been an exhibit in a museum or gallery, is actually a good actress, but again left with nothing to say.

    I’d like to point out that I love Woody Allen films.

  7. Though some admire Mr. Allen and love Ms. Johanson, I could not find a reason to care about any character in the movie. Ms Johanson’s “performance” is one of the worst attempts at acting I have ever seen and she is so coy about showing her body, ok, but she is supposed to be sexy and it was shot in London. What a dreary mess.

  8. I saw “Match Point” last night and while my feelings about the film are mixed, I felt Ms. Johanson’s performance was surprisingly weak. The confrontational scenes with JRM, in particular, were forced and didn’t flow well. I kept hearing a voice saying, “O.K., cut! Let’s try that again.” Oh well, at least there’s still the delicious bon bon factor.

  9. I heard great things about this and didn’t take the time to do my research before I went. It worked for syriana. Well not this movie. I thought it was HORRIBLE. The writing was average, the “twist” wasn’t such a surprise, and the acting was horrible.

    Overall it was flat, creepy, and totally a waste of two hours of my life.

  10. This is the worst case of “The Emperors New Clothes” that I`ve ever witnessed!! More shocking than the fact that this movie had no, and I mean NO, natural dialog, good acting, or character bonding, is the fact that anyone could argue it to be a strong film in the first place!
    The infamous leading man with the pout, gave good resembelance to Joey from Friends, when he illustrates his “ooohh” face. Oohh, now I`m sexy. OOhh, now I`m really angry, I mean It! No really! Strong stuff man!
    Anyway, the world is yet again divided…
    Am I the only one who thinks Mr. Woody should just begin rotting away, and retire with his daughter…erh sorry, I mean wife…I get confused…?! Sorry Mia. Touchy subject.
    Mr. Allen. I think you should pack up your woody all together!
    Match Point is a definate stinker!

  11. What a great film. A real step forward by Woody Allen. The movie intertwins the different philosophical elements of previous movies, which is what gives it its subtlety and complexity. From the nigh-on invisible yet pervasive satire of the “establiishment” (maybe a reason for why it’s set in London?) to an interesting projection of how the odds are stacked differently for men and women, to the old Woody favourite of individuality and individuals’ search for meaning in life, to love (also an old favourite), and of course the nature of morality, this movie is a “Best of” film. A masterpiece. Ps: with Woody its important to remember that everything in his movies is deliberate. So if the acting appears shoddy, maybe that’s cause you’ve missed the point. One should atleast give the old man the benefit of the doubt. After all, there is only one Woody Allen, and that’s him.

  12. Those who didn’t find this film absolutely superb are those who didn’t understand it. You must have an I.Q and a sense of humour to understand Woody Allen films. I watched Brokeback last night and I found it utterly boring and long winded. At least Matchpoint kept me on the edge of my seat all the time. Give it some credit for that at least. It’s a fantastic movie and I expected it to do better in terms of award nominations. Woody is a genius!

  13. I’m with that Marte. The only reason I was on the edge of my seat throughout this absolute dog’s dinner of a movie was to leave. The only reason I stayed was to see if it could possibly get worse. And it did. This was the kind of film that could only be made by someone whose experience of London is based on travelling in taxis from a 5 star hotel to a five star restaurant via a film premiere. Woody Allen’s understanding of the English proves to be as impressive as Dick Van Dyke’s accent in Mary Poppins. Starving millions could have been fed with the money he wasted on this steaming cack.

  14. I think we expect so much razzle dazzle from movies these days that a story like match point seems rather mundane. That in itself is what makes this move a good movie. The people are ordinary Scarlet plays an ordianry person that can’t even make it as an actress. How should she have portrayed the character. I have know women like her character. She is set up as a loser from the start. The burst of chemistry between two people in a difficult situation. I have been there. Didn’t go as far as JRM, but lost my soul none the less. Many people expect Woody’s movies to be high brow but he continues to do his best work by showing ordinary people. That’s why I think Interiors is his best film.

  15. On a human level, and that includes the acting, this film is very believable. Where it fails is in the plot. Set in the modern day of 2005, it completely misses out on the modern forensics that make the ending entirely unbelievable and unrealistic. Mr. Allen’s point was to show how much a part luck played in the outcome, but he completely ignored several points that in reality would have caused quite a different outcome. Admittedly, these are modern technologies and maybe Mr. Allen simply isn’t aware of them, but that is his failing.

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