Do you think the film ultimately makes a positive statement or a negative one about Hollywood and its ways? He falls in love with her and she with him, but Monk and the Hollywood moguls are concerned. In the meantime, the other actors trapped within the The Purple Rose of Cairo plot flounder -- playing cards, arguing -- unable to continue with their storyline until Tom Baxter returns. Two very different characters, both played brilliantly. As directed by Mark Sandrich, and scripted by four credited writers and one uncredited , Top Hat is fizzier than the fleeing bubbles of a newly uncorked champagne bottle. Allen adds yet another oddball wrinkle when the actor who created Baxter, Gil Shepherd Daniels , arrives in New Jersey from Hollywood to find Tom and ends up falling for Cecilia too. Had Cecelia been any closer she would have been hit, and likely killed, by the plummeting metal. But Allen eventually felt that, despite a strong performance, Keaton was too contemporary and hard to accept as a character living in the 1930s.
But, sitting in the movie theatre all day does more than offer Cecelia an escape. In fact, The Purple Rose of Cairo clearly shows its debt to Keaton's Sherlock, Jr. They can learn from each other. But the whole thing was manufactured. When I first saw this film as a child, I was heartbroken at the not-happy ending. She gives up the chance to return with Tom to his world, choosing to stay with Gil and have a 'real' life.
One of the most unique features about The Purple Rose of Cairo is its remarkably downbeat ending, which provoked the wrath of his studio Orion. One of the high points of Woody Allen's career. He can learn real life, and she can learn the romance of the movies. Tom also teaches Cecilia about life, which is a reality in its own right. The premise here is unique, but it wears thin after the first reel, even though directer-writer Woody Allen strives mightily to keep things humming. It is there that she, like countless other viewers, can escape her own unhappy life in screen fantasies of rich penthouse dwellers, beautifully dressed women, Egyptologist adventurers and nightclub crooners.
He allows her to feel real feelings while talking of the simple life that they could have together, which is obviously what Cecilia really wants. Gill is a fantasy man for Cecilia. I toyed around with other ideas. He falls in love with her, and steps out of the movie, leaving his baffled castmates unable to move the plot forward. I will admit, some neurosis is retained in the dialogue talk of morality to prostitutes! Cecilia tours Tom around the real world, where things aren't always fair and sex isn't an abstract, unseen concept. Then she finally leaves her husband. During the 1930s, the United States endured the hardships of a Great Depression from which there were few escapes out of daily misery other than film.
By giving her nothing else, Allen allows Cecilia to do what many did during the Depression and lose herself in escapism. Cairo is so constantly fresh and inventive, I couldn't help being captivated during it's short running time. In the end, she chooses reality, but, as Cecelia knows all too well, the real world can be bleak and punishing place. Grown-ups can take this breezy comedy as both a tribute to and a cautionary tale of women who love movies too much. At the crux of the actual film The Purple Rose of Cairo is the need to be able to separate fiction and reality, whether that reality is a horrible one or not. Quite knowingly, Allen is playing to one of his greatest strengths by beginning his movie with a layered, complicated performance from one of his leading ladies—being 1985, this means Mia Farrow—at the square center of the shot.
. Cecilia Mia Farrow , a depression-era waitress married to a brutish husband Danny Aiello , finds her only escape at the movies, her current favorite being a light comedy about an explorer among socialites, called The Purple Rose of Cairo. But the character's defection from the film has caused some problems. The audience continues on with Cecelia only to learn her oppressive, low-life of a husband treats her badly and sleeps around on her; moreover, Cecelia is terrible at her job waitressing. The reason for her adoration, and the other contrast that drives the movie just as much as the fantasy elements, is the setting. However, through discussion, the class brought up points regarding fantasy being Tom Baxter, and reality being Gill Shepherd; my perspective was different. She is baffled at the fact that a man of his stature and fame would ever be interested in her.
The juxtaposition is flooring because while Farrow is every bit as fetching as characters will later attest, the Depression is weighing down heavily upon her within an instant. But on the flipside of such cynicism is how Daniels plays Baxter in the real world with total earnestness and not a drop of irony. But the joke is never on Tom since Daniels plays it with complete wholesomeness and lest the audience sneer matinee idol heroism that makes him the toast of Jersey. Allen has ranked it among his best films, along with and. She sees it so many times that the main character, Tom Baxter Jeff Daniels , falls in love with her and steps off the screen to woo her. Like Cecilia, Allen grew up an obsessive moviegoer who soaked in the pictures that played in his Brooklyn, New York neighborhood.
It's all a clever gimmick, of course, and Allen pulls it off well technically, but the story is as one-dimensional as the fictional Daniels. Mia Farrow is great as usual, and shows how broad her talent is Broadway Danny Rose and Radio Days - both very different characters. The problem is, both of them are now living in real life, where studio moguls and angry actors and snoopy reporters are making their life miserable. Mia Farrow plays a lonely Depression-era waitress trapped in an unhappy marriage. Only later did I realize how agonizingly perfect it is.
The 1930s movie characters shown include a somewhat stereotypical black maid. The film was released on March 1, 1985, to critical acclaim. The Purple Rose of Cairo really does rate up there with Woody's best - from Annie Hall, Manhattan to the earlier, more slapstick efforts, such as Love and Death and Sleeper. But Gil's professions of love for Cecilia were false—he wooed her only to get Tom to return to the movie and thereby save his own Hollywood career. Cecilia must choose between them and she decides to choose the real person of Gil rather than the fantasy figure of Tom. And to combat the feeling of gloom for a populace where more than one in five moviegoers were jobless as well as soothe anxious whispers of social upheaval , Hollywood produced a bevy of their most opulent and joyous fantasies ever produced.
The actor who created Tom, however, turns out to be two-faced. The actor who played the hero is particularly upset, because now there are two of him walking around, one wearing a pith helmet. Gil also winds up romancing Cecilia, urging her to leave her husband for him. Yet, Tom seems the better choice in every way over Gil, except that Tom is a fictional ideal. It won the , while Allen received several screenwriting nominations, including an , a and a. This was due to the early arrival of winter blizzards, just after the storm windows had been removed from the main street shops, ready for filming.