The other evening I watched Woody Allen’s Annie Hall and Manhattan for the first time in a long time. While watching the film, I was reminded of how badly I wanted to be a middle-aged narcissistic Jewish male as a child. Forget being the Little Mermaid or Rainbow Brite, I wanted to be a freakin’ horn-rimmed balding and big-nosed kvetch.
It should have been disconcerting to my mother that a young girl from Upstate New York would want to mold her future personality traits after someone such as Woody Allen. However, considering I had a penchant for dressing up as other short, but less narcissistic Jewish men- most notably 2 out of 5 of the Marx Brothers and Rod Serling- I guess it should have come as no surprise.
I recalled the other evening the precise feeling I had when I first watched those films. It was as if the light bulb had finally been turned on. Here were these people who lived in New York City, were unapologetically self-aware, vocally insecure, and flailed their arms around (more…)