CINEMA: Whatever Works does for Woody

NO FILM-MAKER is more closely associated with Manhattan than Woody Allen and his admirers will be delighted to find that he is at last back on home ground with the comedy Whatever Works.

This film with seats for the general public plays on April 6 at the Curzon Cinema when it is the third of four presentations by the Eastbourne Film Society in their Spring Mini-Season (the final film will be the French drama Leaving but that will not be screened until May).

Whatever Works was originally conceived as a piece for Zero Mostel but then put to one side.

However, it now emerges as an ideal vehicle for Seinfeld’s Larry David. He plays Boris Yellnikoff a delightfully grouchy misanthrope with a failed marriage behind him who unexpectedly attracts a younger woman played by Evan Rachel Wood.

However, when they marry the unsuitability of the match becomes obvious and the joke is on Boris who has been flattering himself over his continuing appeal.

But he is not alone in having relationship problems and the theme of the film is that when it comes to love you should value whatever works regardless of the attitude of others.

This may be familiar territory for Woody Allen, who here writes and directs but does not appear on screen, but it’s great to have him back handling a milieu where he is so completely at ease.