New York Stories 1989

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(18) IMDb 6.4/10
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The omnibus film New York Stories is the product of three powerhouse filmmakers. The film is divided into three stories, each exploring a different aspect of life in the Big Apple. Life Lessons, directed by Martin Scorcese, is a Dostoevsky-like tale of the rarefied Art World, with Nick Nolte as a self-indulgent abstractionist who loves Rosanna Arquette, but can't bring himself to lie to her about her negligible artistic talents. Life Without Zoe, directed by Francis Ford Coppola, is more than a little reminiscent of Kay Thompson's Eloise stories, with 12-year-old Zoe (Heather McComb) running amok at the Sherry-Netherland hotel while her parents are embarked upon a world-girdling vacation. The last and is Woody Allen's Oedipus Wrecks, wherein a schnooky lawyer (guess who?) inadvertently creates the Jewish Mother From Hell: thanks to a misguided magic trick, Allen's mama (the incomparable Mae Questel) becomes a huge spectral vision on the New York skyline, telling everyone within earshot about her son's inadequacies. The cinematographer lineup on New York Stories includes Nestor Almendros, Vittorio Storaro and Sven Nykvist.~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Starring:
Woody Allen, Chris Elliott
Rental Formats:
DVD

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 59 minutes
Starring Woody Allen, Chris Elliott, Giancarlo Giannini, Talia Shire, Mia Farrow, Julie Kavner, Rosanna Arquette, Woo, Mae Questal, Nick Nolte
Director Woody Allen, Francis Ford Cop, Martin Scorsese
Genres Comedy
Studio WALT DISNEY STUDIOS HOME ENTERTAINMENT
Rental release 15 June 2006
Main languages English

Other Formats

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 12 Jan. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
New York Stories is made up of three short films by three directors, Martin Scorcese, Francis Ford Coppola and Woody Allen, who have all had a long love affair with New York in their films. Martin Scorcese's film, `Life Lessons', follows an artist played by Nick Nolte as he paints his masterpiece, spurned on by his tempestuous relationship with his live-in apprentice/muse and object of obsession. Some may find this film somewhat pretentious, but I found it visually and emotionally absorbing and I really enjoyed Scorcese's use of the camera in showing the artist's work. Coppola's story, `Life Without Zoe', is by far the worst of the trio. It is self-indulgent and the only point of note is that it represents Sofia Coppola's first writing credit as co-writer with her father. Sofia recently directed the beautifully poised rites of passage film `The Virgin Suicides', which represented her own transition from the shadow of her father to recognition of being a talent in her own right. Woody Allen's film, Oedipus Wrecks, is by far the best of the trilogy. Permeated with his trademark neuroses and razor-sharp wit, Oedipus Wrecks is about a single Jewish New Yorker (played by Allen) whose mother is constantly trying to get him to settle down with a nice Jewish girl. His mother then disappears (or dies, I can't remember which) only to reappear as a giant disembodied head in the New York sky, where she proceeds to discuss her child's life (complete with baby photo's). This is one of my favourite Woody Allen films, and on the strength of this I am surprised he doesn't make more short films. It is brilliantly Freudian, sharply observed and hilarious, despite the fact that this evidently represents something of a nightmare, not only for Allen's neurotic character but possibly for the director himself. Brilliant. Buy this film on the strength of the third segment.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Vikdaddy on 13 Aug. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
When I picked up my copy of New York Stories, I immediately purchased it. I thought, "currently three of the best auteurs on one film - excellent"! But, when I watched it, I felt slightly disappointed. You see, it isn't such a bad collection of short movies, but I expected three rip-roaring shorts that would knock my socks off. It didn't happen. I expected three directors competing amongst themselves, to show what is best in American film. But it didn't quite turn out that way. Woody Allen's film is great, and the best - classic Woody, you could say. If you enjoy his movies, you will not be dissapointed. But, I suppose that's the benefit of being a director of comedies and starring yourself as the main character in most of your films: Comedies often work when not too long, hence all his films being approximately 90 minutes long; and, there's no need for character development with Woody, as you know what to expect - neurosis personified. Second would be Scorcese's short. A neat, solid film, with Scorcese's familiar style splashed all over. Nick Nolte is very good, and the story is decent enough. But I couldn't help feeling that the story could have been better if it was actually a normal 2-hour film, as it seems to be lacking in some areas. The story felt as if it needed more background, as it felt as if the characters needed more build-up to define more thoroughly the type of people they were. But, all in all a nice little movie. Francis-Ford Coppola's short is the let-down in this collection. The story has it's cute bits, and the main character, a rich, young girl, is played excellently by the youthful actress. But I felt as if the movie was trying to be too cute. Coppola has never made a movie of this type, with this kind of story, and it shows.Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Hill Walker on 13 Sept. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Allen's contribution is quite hilarious and loveable.
Scorcese - yes, a bit pretentious but really a very honest portrayal of artistic angst... maybe.
Coppola - pointless [...].
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lucy on 10 Mar. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The short film by Allen is hilariously true, and the story set among artists is quite interesting even though a bit dejà vu. All in all a good film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Margarita on 14 Nov. 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It is definetely a must see movie.For me the best story is Life Lessons. It gives me such a great feeling!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David Cunliffe on 5 Sept. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Fabulous collection of stories.
One of those videos that gets watched time & time again.
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By Brian Elliott on 5 Jun. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A good trilogy of films. I bought it mainly because I am a Woody Allen huge fan of. Not his best but enjoyable. The other two films were good and the DVD was very cheap.
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By Dinky on 19 Mar. 2015
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I can't begin to explain how dull this film is. Awful acting, awful story line, awful direction. Don't waste your time. Do the washing up instead, or brush the cat
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