The trailer was released on Apple’s website recently. It features Larry quite heavily and from the short clips and one-liners it looks like Larry’s character is a combination of the classic Woody Allen character of past New York movies, and the more abrasive yet equally socially inept “fictional” Larry David we all know and love.
So far it would be fair to say that the reviews have been mixed, though the general consensus that I’ve found that it is mostly enjoyable and that Larry has breathed life into the Woody character that some feel has staled in recent years. I’m very much looking forward to seeing it once it opens in Australia and I’ll be posting my own thoughts as soon as I do.
Sara Vilkomerson of The New York Observerhas an excellent feature article (and some wonderful artwork) discussing the film’s history and Woody and Larry’s relationship. The last paragraph of the article has some of the most encouraging words on the movie so far:
By reaching out to Larry David in Whatever Works, Woody Allen has added something to his canon that he might never have gotten on his own. He hired the one working comedian who could put a knife edge on the usual adorableness of the Woody Allen interpreter. Whatever Works may not be an uncompromising masterpiece, but it’s the astonishing collaboration of two uncompromising comic masters of the romantic and tortured New York psyche.
And it works.
Some of the other reviews I’ve been reading (not all positive, to be fair):
Woody Allen’s Whatever Works: preety, preety good – Ben Walters (The Guardian)
Don’t curb your enthusiasm for Woody Allen’s homecoming film – Whatever Works is engaging and funny, and in Larry David, he’s found a new kindred spirit to channel his sensibility.
Allen the director loses sight of what works. The film lacks breathing room — it rushes forward like a stage play with pre-planned exits and entrances, soliloquies and asides.
Woody ‘Works” magic with new comedy – Roger Friedman (Showbiz411)
Whatever Works” is something of a comic masterpiece, full of trademark Allen raving and ranting but richer and fuller than any comedy he’s made since the days of “Hannah and Her Sisters,” “Manhattan,” and “Annie Hall.”
I leave you with a clip from the film that involves Larry’s and Evan Rachel Wood’s characters discussing his “genius”: