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For too long, the films of Woody Allen have been interpreted as expressions of deconstructionism, nihilism, and postmodern angst. In this pathbreaking new book, distinguished writer Mary P. Nichols challenges these assumptions by arguing that Allen's entire body of work, from Play It Again, Sam to Mighty Aphrodite, is actually an attempt to explore and reconcile the tension between art and life. As witty and complex as its subject, Reconstructing Woody shows why Allen, despite his recent personal turmoil, is immensely concerned with human ethics, goodness, and virtue. Ardent fans and strident detractors will view Woody Allen's films from an entirely new perspective.
Her focus is always on Allen the filmmaker and never on Allen the home-wrecker. More importantly, it is her conviction that Allen's real on-screen preoccupation is not his sex-life, but the interrelationships between art and life.
Chapter 1 Acknowledgements Chapter 2 Preface Chapter 3 The Interpreter and the Artist Chapter 4 The Hero and the Klutz (Play It Again, Sam) Chapter 5 The Anhedonist and the Singer (Annie Hall) Chapter 6 The Interior Decorator and the Vulgerian (Interiors) Chapter 7 The Director and the Fan (Stardust Memories) Chapter 8 The Empiricist and the Image-Maker (A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy) Chapter 9 The Changing Man and the Psychiatrist (Zelig) Chapter 10 The Actor and the Character (The Purple Rose of Cairo) Chapter 11 The Eavesdropper and the Patient (Another Woman) Chapter 12 The Ophthamologist and the Filmmaker (Crimes and Misdemeanors) Chapter 13 The Detectives (Manhattan Murder Mystery) Chapter 14 The Sportswriter and the Whore (Mighty Aphrodite) Chapter 15 The Comic Chapter 16 Notes Chapter 17 Bibliography