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Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)

Original Title : Manhattan Murder Mystery
Director : Woody Allen
Writer : Woody Allen
Marshall Brickman
Genre : Comedy
Mystery
Country : USA
Language : English
Producer : Robert Greenhut (I) , Joseph Hartwick , Charles H. Joffe , Thomas A. Reilly , Helen Robin , Jack Rollins (II)
Music : Cole Porter
Photography : Carlo Di Palma
IMDB ID : 0107507
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poster for "Manhattan Murder Mystery" by Woody Allen (1993)
Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993) - Woody Allen
 

Starring

Woody Allen Larry Lipton
Diane Keaton Carol Lipton
Jerry Adler I
Lynn Cohen I
Ron Rifkin Sy
Joy Behar Marilyn
William Addy Jack, the Super
William Addy Jack, the Super
 

Plot

Larry and Carol are fairly normal New Yorkers who have sent their son off to college. They meet an elderly couple down the hall and later in the week find that the wife has suddenly died. Carol becomes suspicious of Paul who seems to be too cheerful and too ready to move on. She begins her investigation. Larry insists she is becomming too fixated on what their neighbor as all of the irregularities seem to have simple non-homicidal explanations. Ted, a recently divorced friend helps her investigation and Larry begins to become jealous of their relationship and agrees to help her.
 

Comments

Creaky plot redeemed by good ensemble playing Any synopsis of the plot of this film would read like that of a creaky Miss Marple TV movie. That is about its level. Although in showing a clip from Double Indemnity, Allen is unwisely inviting more exalted comparisons. What sets the film slightly above Agatha Christie is Allen's script and good ensemble playing from the four main characters. Some of the clichés of the genre are amusingly done: Keaton, searching the suspect's flat and having to hide under the bed when he returns unexpectedly, the body that disappears before the police arrive, the ‘,dead' woman on the bus. One gets the impression that Allen wrote this frothy confection as therapy during what was, for him, a troubled time and that he called on three of his most tried and trusted repertory of actors, including Dianne Keaton, for moral support. I thought Allen got the idea for the ‘,dead' woman on the bus driving through New York from theE L Doctorow's novel The Waterworks but when I checked the chronology I found that the novel was published in 1994, a year after the film was made. Allen's choice of jazz standards as incidental music for his films continues to delight. This time it is Out of Nowhere by Coleman Hawkins, Big Noise from Winetka by Bob Crosby and Sing Sing Sing by Benny Goodman
 
poster for "Manhattan Murder Mystery"
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Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993) - Woody Allen
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Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993) - Woody Allen
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Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993) - Woody Allen
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