It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
Woody Allen's "Take the Money and Run" has some very funny moments, and you'll laugh a lot, but in the last analysis it isn't a very funny movie. It isn't really a movie at all. I suspect it's a list of a lot of things Woody Allen wanted to do in a movie someday, and the sad thing is he did them all at once.
As everybody knows, movie comedy depends upon a different sense of timing from stand-up humor or cabaret skits or whatever. Movie humor is usually based on the editing; we laugh because we see something we didn't expect, or at a time we didn't expect it. The double take, now firmly embedded in the language, recognizes this principle.
In "Take the Money and Run," Allen hasn't quite succeeded in translating his unique comic style (a national treasure) into movie terms. He still depends too much on what are basically stand-up monologues and stage dialog. An example. The hero (Woody) goes on a lovely walk through a park with his true love (Janet Margolin). There's fog and mist and trees and grass and romance, and indeed this is our old friend the Semi-Obligatory Lyrical Interlude, in which loving couples float through the countryside in slow motion and all that.
Allen handles this by photographing it straight, as if this were a love story and not a comedy. Then he narrates the scene, with what's essentially a nightclub monologue about his difficulties with women. Some of the gags in the monologue are funny, and we laugh, but nothing is being done here to make the movie visually funny.