Bullets Over Broadway (1995)
Set in 1920's New York City, this movie tells the story of idealistic young playwright David Shayne. Producer Julian Marx finally finds funding for the project from gangster Nick Valenti. The catch is that Nick's girl friend Olive Neal gets the part of a psychiatrist, and Olive is a bimbo who could never pass for a psychiatrist as well as being a dreadful actress. Agreeing to this first compromise is the first step to Broadway's complete seduction of David, who neglects longtime girl friend Ellen. Meanwhile David puts up with Warner Purcell, the leading man who is a compulsive eater, Helen Sinclair, the grand dame who wants her part jazzed up, and Cheech, Olive's interfering hitman / bodyguard. Eventually, the playwright must decide whether art or life is more important. This wonderful film stars John Cusack as David Shayne, Dianne Wiest as Helen Sinclair, Jennifer Tilly as Olive Neal, Chazz Palminteri as Cheech and Mary-Louise Parker as Ellen. This is one of my favorite comedy by one of my favorite director, Woody Allen. It is brilliant, witty, clever, hilarious and sinister all at once. A great, great movie.
This is both a brilliant film and a brilliant Woody Allen film. Terrifically funny and pacy, with snappy dialogue, a great story, and wonderful performances. If you like Woody Allen and have friends who don't, it can be quite hard to (a) continue being friends with them and (b) find a way to convince them that they're missing something. Giving them this movie is a great way to show them what they're missing.
Though not exactly characteristic for him, this may be Woody Allen's masterpiece, a story about a struggling playwright and a gangster artist who creates his own moral universe. A theme Allen has explored before, but never quite so articulately as he does here. This movie is so full of great lines, it's like three movies in one. What? It's true.