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A plethora of people have written about Woody Allen John Lahr said and they either like him or dislike him But no one has yet managed I think to interpret him Woody Allen has been revered as one of the brilliant artists of the twentieth century and at the same time called a pervert His works have been called jokes but also masterpieces Many critics have tried to explain why Allen writes the things he writes but not one has had success The drive and brilliance of Allen has not been understood yet Seeing his movies gives us two opposing views One is the screwball comedian who is obsessed with death and sex while the other is the serious artist commenting on and criticizing our society The latter view is more difficult to grasp but is nonetheless there Through different film techniques Allen mocks our society and film industry without us even realizing His most widely used technique to do this is the film within a film In movies such as The Purple Rose of Cairo Play It Again Sam and Hannah and Her Sisters Allen uses this technique to show us his opinion on a particular subject and also uses it as a driving force behind his movies The most notable use of film within a film in Allens movies occurs in The Purple Rose of Cairo The time is The Depression and the scene a small town Cecilia Mia Farrow is the central figure in the movie She is married to an abusive gambler and heavy drinker To cope and escape her problems Cecilia constantly goes to a nearby movie theater called The Jewel There she spends hours on end watching movies sometimes the same one more
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