Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Allen Vs Cuarón At Roxy

The very first time we were taken to the Roxy I was thrilled. There was nothing about the place that I did not like. Every little thing I saw and experienced there gave me an energy that I loved and I never wanted that energy to leave. Not only did this pub/theatre give me an unexplainable high, but it also inspired me to take advantage of my major. There was such a unique and charming vibe in the air that was screaming out to me, giving me the desire to create something like this. Being a Hospitality Tourism Management major I could take this scene of comfort and entertainment and replicate it back home in San Diego. In the states there is not any place like this, or at least not that I have ever heard of, and I truly believe that this idea would thrive in America. American’s love the “dinner and a movie” event and the entirety of it has always been popular. The only thing that could possibly make it better is if we could watch the new released films on comfortable couches while eating a great meal and afterwards you wouldn’t have to drive to the bar because it is right on the other side of a curtain. Furthermore, Roxy welcomed everyone, all types of people. Just as a movie theatre back home would attract millions for the new Harry Potter film, Roxy attracts a variety of crowds to sit and enjoy a drink, a meal, and a movie, with your friends and loved ones. Walking out of the pub/theatre I was so in love with the place and the concept. Everything from the couches to the variety of people that were drawn to it gave me a burning passion to take this idea and do something similar once I graduate.

The film that was playing was Vicky Christina Barcelona, which is directed by Woody Allen. Other than his thick black glasses that he has been wearing since the 1960s, Allen has a select few trademarks in his films. For example, he frequently casts himself in his films, most likely as a writer; nearly all of his films will start and end in the same style, with white-on-black credits; he doesn’t film his dialogs using “the typical intercut close-ups” rather he uses “long, medium-range shots” (imbd). Also, he is known for being an impossible interviewee, and during the few interviews that he has participated in he has admitted only a few things, one being “He gets no pleasure from making films. ‘None of [my movies] have been any fun at all. They’ve all been terrific anxiety and hard work. … I would consider all the movies that I’ve done failures. … I always finish and say, ‘Ugh¾I only got 60 percent of that idea that worked and what a shame’” (Allen). And when asked about his career he says luck plays a huge role and “I have everything going for me. And it all happened so accidentally¾had you told me fifteen years ago that I was going to be the lead in a movie I would have thought you were crazy” (Allen).

When I heard we would be making our way back to the Roxy for a second time I was ecstatic. This place is like my own brand of heroine; I cannot get enough of it. Ben had called ahead and reserved couches for us and we were all quit to get cozy up next to one another. This time was no different for me than the first time I walked through the front door. I was overwhelmed with emotion and desire. I felt like I was walking back into the perfect dream of rainbows, candy, and ice cream. I was giddy like a thirteen-year old girl at a Jonas Brothers concert and I knew that was where I belonged. Once again I did not want to leave I wanted to curl up into the fetal position and fall asleep on the couch. It gave me reassurance; I am 100 percent positive that this is what I want to do with my life.

The film that we were to watch this time was Y tu Mama Tambien. The director, Alfonso Cuarón, is very similar to Woody Allen yet at the same time they are exact opposites. One similarity that I noticed was, just as Woody Allen narrated Vicky Christina Barcelona, Alfonso Cuarón narrated Y tu Mama Tambien. Also, they both have trademarks involving the beginning and end of their films. Just like Allen’s particular style of credits at the beginning and ending, Cuarón “flashes the title of the movie both at the beginning and at the end” (imbd). Lastly, they both have their favorite people to work with. Woody Allen prefers to work with Scarlett Johansson, as she stars in many of his films including Vicky Christina Barcelona, and Alfonso Cuarón tends to favor Emmanuel Ludezki when it comes to the director of photography. The major differences about the two directors include how they came to be in the spotlight. As mentioned earlier, Woody Allen feels like he is where is because of luck and he did not ever dream of being a famous film star. However, Alfonso Cuarón knew ever since he was a small boy that he wanted to be a director. Allen’s began his career writing jokes for a newspaper and then he moved on to standup comedy when he was offered the chance to write a script and everything has been uphill from there. Cuarón on the other hand went against his parent’s wishes and enrolled in film school where he was soon expelled. While working at a museum he was confronted and asked to be a cable person and he soon worked his way up to assistant director and then director. For the most part, Cuarón was in control of what he directed just as Allen was, pulling out of productions such as Addicted to Love in order to work on A Little Princess, which he felt more passionate about. However, Allen always wrote and directed his own films doing exactly as he wanted and not answering to anyone. Where as Cuarón only directed what was presented to him and if something better came along he would drop his previous engagement and do as he pleased.

The Internet Movie Database. Biography for Woody Allen. Received 22 Jul 2009 from

The Internet Movie Database. Biography for Alfonso Cuarón. Received 22 Jul 2009 from

Allen, Woody, Kapsis, Robert E., Coblentz, Kathie. Woody Allen: Interviews. 2006.

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