"I have a theory about this film. Woody Allen wrote the script when he was about 15 and had just discovered these literary, artistic and cinematic greats. And instead of re-reading it when he was 18, realising that it stank to high heaven and burning it, he's made it into a move and inflicted it on all of us. Either that, or aliens have stolen his brain and he's forgotten how to write movies.
Because, let's face it, this is HORRIBLE. Shallow, self-indulgent, sycophantic, misogynist, pretentious crap. By the time Owen Wilson's struggling writer has wittered about Paris and how lovely it is for five minutes, I wanted to punch him in the face, but I realised he's meant to be the hero and we're actually meant to CARE about whether he succeeds in his quest to stop being a Hollywood hack (biting the hand that feeds you there, Woody) and become a proper writer, and find a woman who admires him and presumably doesn't answer back. It has nothing to say about the luminaries it wheels on - they all just do a turn. Heminway's intense, Zeda F is a flake, Scott Fitzgerald is a nonentity (noooo!), Gertrude Stein is forthright, Picasso does weird paintings and so on. It's one of two fanboy movies this year (the other was the much more bearable MY WEEK WITH MARILYN). This has lots of text and no subtext, no subtlety and - tragic for the master of comedies of manners - no humour that's not heavy-handed. It's a film about Paris like NOTTING HILL is a film about London - there is the tourist Paris where all streets are cobbled, all roads lead to the Seine or have a view of the Eiffel Tower, and there is nobody who isn't white. And okay, we writers all fantasise about our literary hero/ine sitting us down and saying, "This novel of yours, it's really promising You've really got something there..." but we don't actually put that scene in a sodding FILM!! and expect people to pay money to watch it. Owen Wilson's a good comic actor, but here he's playing Woody's avatar and does Woody's voice spot-on - just enough to be really, really annoying. Do yourself a favour: read TENDER IS THE NIGHT or THE FIRST FORTY-NINE and give this film a very wide berth. Adolescent rubbish written by a 75-year old who should be old enough to know better"