Whatever Works

Rated 2.0

I can’t decide whether it’s more depressing that a dud like Vicky Cristina Barcelona can be categorized as a “comeback” for Woody Allen, or that Whatever Works is the sixth unfunny comedy Allen has made this decade. Were the last 10 years an epic meta-revenge against the freak-show gallery clamoring for the “older, funnier” pictures in Stardust Memories? Billy Wilder declined, but he still made The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes and Avanti! as a senior citizen—at this point, the so-so Match Point looks like Allen’s modern masterpiece. Whatever Works is clichéd malarkey from the Anything Else school, shot in a flat style usually associated with Two and a Half Men. This one is about the unlikely romance between a neurotic ex-physicist and a guileless Southern cutie (Larry David and Evan Rachel Wood, both blameless).