100 Greatest Films of all time – 11: Crimes and Misdemeanours

by Laurent Kelly

Crimes and Misdemeanours (1989)  Directed and written by: Woody Allen  Starring: Martin Landau, Woody Allen, Mia Farrow, Alan Alda, Anjelica Huston, Claire Bloom  OSCAR COUNT (0) – Nominated for Director, Original Screenplay and Supporting Actor (Landau) 

Crimes and Misdemeanours portrays two loosely linked stories which each show how life affirming notions of virtue and morality serve no real function in a world ruled by the rich and powerful. What makes the film outstanding is that its narrative leads one to anticipate that a sense of justice will prevail only to then to subvert this tone with a cruel ending that mirrors the harsh nature of everyday society. That Allen’s script also manages to incorporate deft comedy within these tragic tales without nullifying the impact of the drama speaks volumes about how masterfully it is crafted. Continue reading