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Celebrity

Director/Writer:Woody Allen
Miramax; R; 113 minutes
Release:11/98
Cast:Hank Azaria, Kenneth Branagh, Judy Davis, Leonardo Dicaprio, Melanie Griffith, Winona Ryder and Charlize Theron

Woody's a no-show in front of the camera this time around. But he's there in spirit, in the form of Kenneth Branagh, who has mastered the master's shtick, down to the neurotic tick. And boy, does that get old fast. Branagh plays Lee, a frustrated novelist/screenwriter who's reluctantly settled on writing celebrity interviews. Though he'd like to think he's slumming it, Lee gets off on hobnobbing with the rich and famous. He even hobnobs his way into relationships with Supermodel (Theron), a vampy actress (Griffith), who borrows sexual philosophy from President Clinton, and a young struggling actress (Ryder). Judy Davis, who's earned the role previously reserved for Mia Farrow, plays his insecure, tormented ex-wife who finds happiness doing what she used to make fun of. Leonardo DiCaprio spices up every scene he's in with his young hotel-trashing superstar. It may not be Woody at his best, but Celebrity goes for the jugular, with mean-spirited, satirical barbs that are right on the mark.


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