Of all Woody Allen’s romantic comedies (i.e. the genre of 99% of his films) Everyone Says I Love You is one of the least famous. Allen had something of a mid/late 90s slump, and this month’s Woody Allen pick went completely under the radar when it was released.
Everyone Says I Love You is primarily set in New York with jaunts to Venice and Paris. This is essentially why I chose it as the Venice canals are enchanting to look at. We don’t need another Woody Allen romcom set entirely in New York. No one does.
Everyone Says I Love You
In keeping with the title, to sum up the film in one sentence I would say it’s about everyone loving everyone else and no one at the same time. A middle-class, white American family called the Dandridge family live in the Upper East Side of Manhattan. They comprise of father Dan, mother Steffi, and their kids Skylar, Scott, Lane and Laura. I’m pretty sure two children are Dan’s from a previous marriage, but I honestly can’t remember which. You keeping up so far?
Then, there’s D.J who is Steffi’s daughter from a previous marriage to Joe Berlin (Woody Allen playing Joe). Joe and Steffi are still on good terms and Joe even introduced Steffi to her husband-to-be, Dan. D.J is also hell bent on setting up her father with an American woman they meet in Venice because it just so happens D.J’s best friend’s mum is this American woman’s shrink and knows everything about her. Blergh. I’m exhausted.
I’m not going to ruin the rest of the narrative just incase you want to stay in suspense. This kind of complicated narrative is classic Woody Allen and very cheesy. In-keeping with the cheesy theme, Everyone Says I Love You is a full-on musical. Yep. Not like The Sound of Music (1965) but like Moulin Rouge (2001) where all the songs are ripped off and re-arranged for the purpose of the film. I don’t know if having songs adds anything apart from instilling the fact that this film is bonkers.
It ain’t all bad…
I’ve been writing like this is the biggest joke of a film since Godzilla (1998), but aside from the generic Woody Allen-ness and odd musical elements, it’s actually a fun film with a phenomenal cast. Aside from Woody Allen there’s Goldie Hawn, Drew Barrymore and Julia frickin’ Roberts (whose storyline reminds me of a very similar one in Irrational Man (2015)).
The garrets of Paris and the gondolas of Venice bookend the film nicely. If you don’t like cheesy, at least stay to explore the magical European cities.
It’s not Citizen Kane (1941) but Allen didn’t intend to produce Citizen Kane. He makes satirical comedy which highlights the insecurity and neuroses of the American middle class. This will no doubt stem from Allen’s own insecurity and neuroses. Everyone might say I Love You, but to they just want to be loved? Do they mean it?
Have you ever watched Everyone Says I Love You?