User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 32 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 32
  2. Negative: 6 out of 32
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  1. JeffreyL.S.
    Sep 29, 2003
    6
    (**1/2-out of 4) Hope this logs? I was on another site & I wrote 2 long-reviews on same film-(even compiling *"The Woodman" Woody Allen's-(1935-) OSCAR-record 13 screenplay nominations! But they need help over there.... Anyway, *Woody is my personal fav. filmmaker today. & his newest annual film is just ok. He's an acquired taste. & In an obvious effort to appeal to a younger (**1/2-out of 4) Hope this logs? I was on another site & I wrote 2 long-reviews on same film-(even compiling *"The Woodman" Woody Allen's-(1935-) OSCAR-record 13 screenplay nominations! But they need help over there.... Anyway, *Woody is my personal fav. filmmaker today. & his newest annual film is just ok. He's an acquired taste. & In an obvious effort to appeal to a younger crowd he has both Jasob Biggs & Christina Ricci-Man, has she changed from my memories of her being Winona's lil' sis in 1990's "Mermaids" But both are actually pretty dull performers. Of course *Woody has now recruited Biggs into his world of "Woody-isms" He's done it with the likes of Ed Norton, Cusack & of course mostly: Mia Farrow-(1945-)whom did 13 flix with him) & *Diane Keaton-(1946-) she did 8. & In essence they sound like him. Banter back and fourth,etc. But in this lil' flick it's *Woody himself that steals his own show for most part. & It's a little different type of character he plays here. A lil' man of hidden violence? I'll never divulge endings as some do though. But as i noted he holds all-time ACADEMY record of Best Screenplay noms. (13 to date)-1 more than the late: *Billy Wilder-(1906-2003) & It's very unlikely he will win, or even be nominated for this comedy. If your a true fan, you go though. & as I log this & If it takes? Yet another heavyweight has passed away: *Elia Kazan-(1909-2003) & speaking of such. Of course most *Woody fans know his #1 idol is: Bob Hope-(1903-2003) & If you check out his earliest jazz, you'll see a lot of Hope & Groucho Marx as well. I've always felt the lil' guy deserved an OSCAR nom for '72's "Play It Again, Sam" I've always felt since he only acted, no writing or directing, he was able to concentrate on his work as an imbecile in that movie!? But we all know how fond the ACADEMY is of all out comedy. Although his biggie OSCAR-wise *"Annie Hall" '77 did defeat "Star Wars?" By the way, he's been nominated for Best Director 6 times td. Thank You & please post this-(unlike ....) Expand
  2. JoshS.
    Aug 3, 2004
    8
    Dreadfully underrated.
  3. WilliamP.
    Mar 24, 2005
    8
    Did anybody pick up on the possibility that the Woody Allen character, David Dobel, exists only in Jerry's imationation? He usually talks with Jerry when they are alone. In a crowded restaurant, he shows up when Jerry is having a tete a tete with his manager, but everyone ignores him as if he isn't there. He's a school teacher who drives a Porsche. Come on!? And when Dobel Did anybody pick up on the possibility that the Woody Allen character, David Dobel, exists only in Jerry's imationation? He usually talks with Jerry when they are alone. In a crowded restaurant, he shows up when Jerry is having a tete a tete with his manager, but everyone ignores him as if he isn't there. He's a school teacher who drives a Porsche. Come on!? And when Dobel drives Jerry to New Jersey, he says he wants to buy him a rifle. But later, Jerry tells his shrink that he, himself, bought the rifle. Yes, there is one single scene, where Jerry and Dobel are trying out the rifle in his apartment when Amanda and her mother walk in...and the mother asks Dobel to help her move the piano...but it doesn't budge. That's the only time that I could find any interaction with another character, and seems to me to underscore the fact that Dobel isn't really there. He's all of the things that Jerry fears he may be and wishes he were. (All of his reasons for seeing a shrink for so many years, without getting any visible results.) His very name--Doble--might be cryptic for "Double." And what do Jerry and Amanda talk about? Dostoyevsky's Notes From Underground---in which the notion of a doppelganger or Double, is raised. (Def. "A ghostly double of a living person, especially one that haunts its own fleshly counterpart.") Did anyone else get this? PS: I liked the movie, thought it played like Annie Hall redux. Expand
  4. CraigP
    Mar 13, 2005
    10
    Underrated.
  5. AliceZ.
    Nov 7, 2003
    10
    I really liked this movie. Woody Allen never fails to make me laugh.
  6. C
    Sep 19, 2003
    10
    Woody Allen wins again.
  7. JackO.
    Sep 21, 2003
    10
    Wonderful! America doesn't deserve Woody...
  8. AdrianE.
    Sep 22, 2003
    9
    Very funny.
  9. ChadS.
    Sep 25, 2003
    5
    The trailer for "Anything Else" enticed me, practically galvanized me, made me believe that Woody Allen was back, if not up to "Annie Hall"-form, then "Sweet and Lowdown"-form would've been salad enough after iceberg efforts like "Hollywood Ending" and "The Curse of the Jade Scorpion". But alas, tired blood circulating in younger bodies is still tired blood. "Anything Else" is The trailer for "Anything Else" enticed me, practically galvanized me, made me believe that Woody Allen was back, if not up to "Annie Hall"-form, then "Sweet and Lowdown"-form would've been salad enough after iceberg efforts like "Hollywood Ending" and "The Curse of the Jade Scorpion". But alas, tired blood circulating in younger bodies is still tired blood. "Anything Else" is sporadically funny, but the laughs are Pavlovian. We remember the potent versions of Allen's riffs on love, Jews, and death, and our affection for his past glories taps into a goodwill, a bedrock unruffled by the diminishing returns of his recent efforts. "Anything Else" is like a Vegas revue. He tries to be contemporary by touching upon America's obsession with guns, and Diana Krall, but his contempt for young people(DeVito's character remarks how we're a nation of non-readers), gives Biggs the unlikely hobby of collecting old 78s. Still, Allentown is still a more preferable stay than Farrellyville. Expand
  10. Yoonmincho
    Dec 23, 2003
    8
    In some ways, this is Allen repeating his past successes with the younger crowd and might strike the viewer as unconvincing; do kids today talk and act like Allen and Keaton back in the late 70s? However, Allen has finally created a female character who's gutsy and smart no matter how much of a castrating bitch; his past women--weak, strong, vicious, etc--were all denuded by In some ways, this is Allen repeating his past successes with the younger crowd and might strike the viewer as unconvincing; do kids today talk and act like Allen and Keaton back in the late 70s? However, Allen has finally created a female character who's gutsy and smart no matter how much of a castrating bitch; his past women--weak, strong, vicious, etc--were all denuded by Allen's superior wit and humor. Ricci, despite her unsavory qualities, survives the entire movie as one formidable broad. So firstly, we have an Allen female character who weathers Allen's burrowing wit and scathing humor. Another interesting aspect concerns Allen's coming to terms with the reality of Jewish anxiety without reducing it into a joke. Yes, humor is one way to cope to with fears and anxiety but a punchline is useless against a real punch. Here, finally, Allen reveals a side of his anxiety as a geek and a Jew that can't be disarmed with a one-liner. This has by the far the most disturbing scene in an Allen movie, where his character succumbs to real anger. In the context of Allen's movies, it's shocking. Allen was kind of like the superhero of geekdom, who always outwitted those stronger and dumber than he; Anything Else is Allen's kryptonite; he's rendered helpless. Of course, Allen sensibly mocks this obsession, showing a Jew ironically becoming much like his enemy, the whacky paranoid rightwing militiaman. However, Allen is perhaps reacting to shifts in world politics and demographics. With rising Muslim populations in US and Europe and the fading away of the sense of guilt assoicated with the Holocaust, how safe are the Jews(and, by implication, any other minority for that matter)? And, an interesting contrast develops between Allen and Biggs. Allen always represented the Jew as outsider anxiously knocking to get in. He was accepted but always plagued, even tickled, by a certain insecurity. Biggs represents the Jew who takes his insider status for granted. He may have heard stories about persecution but the meaning of Jewishness as an identity of pride or self-loathing, of tribal security or ethnic vulnerability, is mostly a matter of theory. Unlike Allen who has wished to belong to Wasp society, Biggs is a Jew raised within Wasp society. Perhaps, Allen is a bit jealous. Perhaps, he's worried that the younger generation of Jews are amnesiac. Or, maybe a little of both. Anyway, this is one Allen movie that I couldn't just walk away laughing. Just like Allen's best film--Broadway Danny Rose--it genuinely made me a little sad, for A bitter film? But, perhaps it's a response to something like Godards's JLG/JLG where Zionism is equated with Nazism. If Allen has a political ideology, it might be called JewishAnxietyism, and we sense that Allen feels hostility from both the resurgent right and the radical Left. Expand
  11. JimK.
    Sep 21, 2003
    1
    I really thought it was boring.
  12. DanB.
    Sep 25, 2003
    6
    You know it's a Woody Allen movie when it seems not-so-funny because it only has 50 good lines.
  13. BennieA.
    Jul 31, 2004
    10
    Funniest, sharpest, wisest, best-executed Woody Allen film in 15 years. A minor masterpiece.
  14. LouF.
    Nov 28, 2008
    8
    Nice divertissement for dialogue, acting, coleur locale and your typical Allen uber-selfconsciousness as a scathing and absurd way of self-reflection. He takes himself so seriously he in fact ís two people in one. This is why I suspect William P. is right in suggesting that Dobel is Double - is his alter. Great point.
  15. Feb 14, 2011
    7
    Nice movie, well written with a descent amattering of laughs. Very much a typical Woody Allen effort through and through. The acting was very solid. I had fun.
  16. Oct 10, 2011
    2
    This film is what Allen would call in his better years, 'mental masturbation.' I don't need to talk about how the story and jokes are shamelessly recycled from other Allen movies, or how all the characters are either boring or unpleasant, or how out of touch the film is with how college graduates talk, or how sick I am of listening to people talking about their fear of death. All I need toThis film is what Allen would call in his better years, 'mental masturbation.' I don't need to talk about how the story and jokes are shamelessly recycled from other Allen movies, or how all the characters are either boring or unpleasant, or how out of touch the film is with how college graduates talk, or how sick I am of listening to people talking about their fear of death. All I need to say is this: I would rather watch anything else than Anything Else. Expand
Metascore
43

Mixed or average reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 37
  2. Negative: 12 out of 37
  1. Reviewed by: David Stratton
    70
    The younger casting brings a freshness to the material and, with Allen as the weird mentor, there are plenty of laughs, even if the pacing's slow and the running time over-extended.
  2. Disappointingly mediocre.
  3. With every recycled piece of business -- which is to say, every scene in Anything Else -- the distance widens between Allen and the elusive audience he pessimistically chases. He has never seemed less in touch with his own real, pulsing, 21st-century city.