I went into Blue Jasmine as an experiment to see whether critics were so profoundly angry at Woody Allen the omission of an Oscar nomination for best picture was entirely personal.
While characterized by a fantastic performance from Cate Blanchett as a modern day Blanche DuBois (no, that’s not an original observation but it is the fitting shoe) – and undoubtedly pale in comparison Allen’s late-era masterpiece to Midnight in Paris – I will say this:
Snub, snub, snubby-snub-snub.
The Basics: Formerly, drably known as “Jeanette” in her humble early life, Jasmine names herself to match her married-in rich surroundings. Her entire identity – rather, shell – is made of excess, luxury, comfort and ignorance, and when her husband gets taken down for fraud she loses everything but the ignorance.
The Bottom Line: In what other films is a Hermès bag an actual character? The knowing contrasts between authenticity and, well, everything else strike repeatedly. It is admittedly difficult to imagine an actress of lesser caliber delivering in as meaningful a fashion, but the story of a woman relying on the family she unwittingly ruined and descending into pity could hardly be done with a light heart if not for Woody Allen.
Creep or not, he made a good movie. Definitely better than at least two nominated in its stead.
Rating: 8 (of 10).