Bananas is like a cookie-batter of all of those early Woody Allen jokes all plopped into a bowl and shaken around. It's a film loaded with political jokes, but without a direct focus aside from Cuba and dictators and the like. There are numerous sexual jokes, including one of Woody's funniest scenes involving a magazine (the buying and holding on a subway, very silent comedy-like). And even Howard Cosell becomes an iconic figure in Woody's comedy in the brilliant opening scenes. The plot is very loose, so if you're looking for that look elsewhere. Also, to put it mildly, some of the jokes may not work at all for some viewers of today. But it's the go-for-broke irreverence of the picture that has it still worth viewing today. Much of Woody's own verbal bits are very good, but it's also worth to note how the physical comedy- while crude and a little off-key- also has a good ring to it. Unlike the director's later films, you can still sense that he's trying to 'get' how to make a film, and so in trying to do anything he can think of to get a laugh, of course, some of it doesn't work. For example, in Cuba the gag where the gargantuan pile of dung is carried down the stairs with the Lain music in the background gives a grin, but not as big a laugh as might be intended. Indeed, this might be Woody's most 'immature' film, while still containing some of his more biting, satirical jabs at dictators and oddball politics. Woody would still have this wild, go-for-broke style of humor more akin to some of his quirkier short stories in other films of the early 70s. While this isn't as successful in that regard as Sleeper or Love and Death, I'd still watch it again if it was on TV; even the romantic subplot, undercooked in comparison with the rest of the more satirical stuff, is interesting.
When a bumbling New Yorker is dumped by his activist girlfriend, he travels to a tiny Latin American nation and becomes involved in its latest rebellion.
Downloaded 13,837 times
November 2, 2019