Rating: R for sexuality and drug use
Run Time: 1 hour, 48 minutes
Woody Allen’s heir apparent is undoubtedly Jason Biggs, who quirks and whines his way through this madcap romantic comedy with eccentric finesse.
Jerry Falk, an aspiring comedy writer living on the fringe in
Pouring his heart out to his support network doesn’t seem to help. Jerry’s analyst sits in stony-silent judgment, while gadabout pal David Dobel (Allen) makes a compelling case against Amanda’s very presence in Jerry’s life (“The Pentagon should be using her hormones for chemical warfare”).
Adding insult to injury is Jerry’s beseeching pit-bull of an agent (Danny DeVito), for whom Jerry is a client roster of One, and Amanda’s mom Paula (Stockard Channing), a boozy chanteuse who moves in to the couple’s spare bedroom with no definite date of departure.
Can two neurotics find real happiness? Can altruism conquer nihilistic pessimism? Is there a quick fix for love at first sight?
Though hardly vintage Allen, “Anything” hits its marks far more often than it misses. The script is punctuated with enough genuine zingers (“Look at her body language – all verbs”) and Woody-esque wisdom (“Work gives the illusion of meaning; sex gives the illusion of continuity”) to placate Allen’s idiosyncratic fans, while Biggs’ and Ricci’s presence clearly calls out to the “American Pie” set.
Allen’s trademark paranoia like a comfortable pair of sneakers, engaging his
audience by frequently addressing his dysfunctionally comic dialogue directly
to the camera. Ricci perfectly embodies the quintessential Allen Girl –
beautiful and seductive, with a noggin full of loose screws.