Love and Death (1975): 4/5
Love and Death is a classic Woody Allen film, though much less appreciated than some of his other films, such as Annie Hall (1977). It costars Diane Keaton and is a parody of all things Russian.
This movie is pretty hilarious. From the opening scene, it brings the laughs and keeps them coming. Some of the humor is a bit over-the-top, but coming from Woody, it works.
Love and Death absolutely packed with memorable one-liners and crazy conversations. Particularly rib-cracking are the philosophical exchanges between Woody and Diane.
Woody’s character of Boris, as well as his performance as Boris are definitely the stand-out element here. He’s quirky and a little bit crazy. He’s far more intelligent and far less masculine/macho/athletic than his brothers and the other war-lovin’ men in his Russian town, which also makes him more interesting than those characters.
The moment that really endeared me to Boris — though his hilarity is frequent — was just when he and his fellow “warriors” were getting ready to leave town and fight… and Boris showed up with a glass-encased butterfly collection and insect net rather than a weapon. And that scene kind of tells you all you need to know about this film going in – it’s quirky, it’s funny and it showcases Woody Allen’s genius.