After losing everything and suffering a mental breakdown when her wealthy husband (Alec Baldwin) is sent to jail on fraud charges, Jasmine Francis (Cate Blanchett) goes to stay with her sister (Sally Hawkins) in San Francisco. When Woody Allen takes on the financial crisis, he naturally sets the story in a world he knows best, among the well-to-do and “cultured”. But he also gives it a big slap across the face by writing a lead character that is far from likable and letting her collide with real, working-class people. There is much darkness beneath the surface that lends weight to an otherwise entertaining story. Great cast; Blanchett gives a no-holds-barred performance.
2013-U.S. 98 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Letty Aronson, Stephen Tenenbaum, Edward Walson. Written and directed by Woody Allen. Cast: Cate Blanchett (Jeanette “Jasmine” Francis), Sally Hawkins (Ginger), Alec Baldwin (Hal Francis), Bobby Cannavale, Andrew Dice Clay, Peter Sarsgaard… Louis C.K., Alden Ehrenreich.
Trivia: Bradley Cooper was allegedly considered for a role.
Oscar: Best Actress (Blanchett). BAFTA: Best Actress (Blanchett). Golden Globe: Best Actress (Blanchett).
Last word: “It’s a very contemporary fable… for the moment. That’s a thing of Woody’s. He’s only catering to the zeitgeist – who hasn’t followed the Madoff affair, and the epic nature of that catastrophe? But also catastrophes like it, there’s thousands of them, thousands of stories. But also, there’s a strong line in American drama of women who walk the border between fantasy and reality. Blanche Dubois in ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’, and Mary Tyrone in ‘Long Day’s Journey Into Night’. In the end, those reference points, they’re there to be drawn upon and that’s what we did, but these are all such particular women and takes on the universe. In the end, you’re in a Woody Allen film, playing a – he’s created some of the most iconic characters in his films – in the end you have to play that. And he cast it so weirdly!” (Blanchett, Geek Nation)