Winslet and Allen's "Wonder Wheel" is now playing in select theaters, courtesy of Amazon Pictures.
"I just think he's very in touch with that side of himself", Winslet told the Herald.
I can admit that these do exist. "It works for Woody Allen still". The boardwalk, the beach, vintage books, a pizzeria: The period is lovingly and persuasively evoked, the lighting (from VIP cinematographer Vittorio Storaro) forever shifting with the mood from honeyed gold to seedy neon, sometimes over the course of a long take. His co-star Kate Winslet decided not to thank Weinstein during her 2009 Oscars speech, explaining to the Los Angles Times in a piece published in October, "If people aren't well-behaved, why would I thank him?"
Winslet's character, oyster-bar waitress Ginny, is a minor working-class variation on Cate Blanchett's in Blue Jasmine, herself a minor upper-crust riff on Blanche DuBois. But it comes too late in the film, and too late in the day, to stick.
Even as director Woody Allen is surrounded by a number of controversies, actress Kate Winslet was all praises for him when she said she believes he is "on some level a woman".
"Woody wanted to hire me", adds Winslet, "and I had to step up to the plate and be the goods that he'd hired, and be the best possible version of those goods that I could find within myself".
Kate Winslet has nothing but niceties for her director Woody Allen's portrayal of women - even as his daughter, Dylan Farrow, calls out stars like Winslet for their enduring support. Everyone from Jim Belushi to Kate Winslet appears to be delivering flashy performances created to garner awards consideration in a not-so-subtle way, as almost every scene from these two, in particular, are filled with over-the-top speech tones and flailing hand gestures. The line is one of many doosies that are uttered here. It's like the words are dollar bills and her scenes are one of those booths at fairgrounds and game shows where the money flies around and it's up to you to grab enough to make it worth your while. He never said he loved her. Belushi brings a touching vulnerability to his under-shirted cartoon caricature, nearly like Stanley Kowalski as played by Fred Flintstone.
Woody Allen's "Wonder Wheel" is told from the point of view of a male character who is romantically involved simultaneously with both a woman and her stepdaughter. Ginny (Kate Winslet giving a terrific performance that nearly makes me forget The Mountain Between Us exists) is unhappy as the wife to Humpty (Saturday Night Live alumni and Chicago's own Jim Belushi), often neglected with references to physical abuse (although never depicted on-screen). Instead, he gets the pretty boy but rather wooden actor, Justin Timberlake to play Mickey, an aspiring playwright and lifeguard who also narrates the story. Alas, "Wonder Wheel" is a return to the familiar grind, running off a checklist of the filmmaker's exhausted pet obsessions while occasionally playing like a parody of post-war Broadway miserabilism. But it turns out the tragic flaw is Allen's - and I don't just mean his apparent refusal to bother with multiple drafts of a script. He's a victim of fate: She think he's smart, the clouds are about to burst, and he's got a copy of Ernest Jones' Hamlet and Oedipus to lend her. She doesn't and Ginny becomes more and more grating, and then finally pathetic.
The effect is damning, but Farrow also seems to suggest that she can understand why some still defend their associations with him, writing, "For decades, Allen has used the same defense-through-intimidation techniques that Weinstein allegedly did".