Could this be the greatest movie summer in decades?
Can Woody Allen perform under pressure?
When's the last time anyone had any sort of box office expectations for a Woody Allen movie? Sure, both "Match Point" and "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" generated decent numbers, but usually Allen is lucky to crack $10 million at the U.S. box office. He's typically well over $1 million (save for the rare catastrophe like "Cassandra's Dream"), but the staggering sleeper success of last summer's "Midnight in Paris" -- which earned $56.8 million in the U.S. alone -- is unheard of.
Can he possibly do it again? His follow-up, "To Rome with Love" (previously known as the less commercial sounding "Nero Fiddled" and "The Bop Decameron"), is made up of four romantic vignettes and boasts an impressive cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Ellen Page, Alec Baldwin, "Vicky" Oscar winner Penélope Cruz, "Husbands and Wives" Oscar nominee Judy Davis, Roberto Benigni, Greta Gerwig, Alison Pill (who played Zelda Fitzgerald in "Midnight in Paris") and Allen himself (on screen for the first time since 2006's "Scoop").
Italian audiences get the first look when the film opens there April 22. We're not expecting another "Midnight in Paris" level sensation. But it sure would be nice to get two good Allen movies in a row. For once.
- Geoff Berkshire