HannahSisters1A continuation of the Woodster’s love affair with Manhattan, following Annie Hall and Manhattan (natch) among others. This is one of his better films, using a sharp script to smoothly capture the difficulties of balancing marriage and lust. Bonus; very few annoying moments (not always the case with Allen’s work). Allen—whom I tend to admire much more as a screenwriter and director than an actor—does a nice job here in all roles, his Mickey (Hannah’s hypochondriac ex-husband) chilling in the background to allow a fantastic Michael Caine to lead the way as Elliot, who’s unhappily married to Hannah (Mia Farrow) but smitten by her sister Lee (Barbara Hershey). Meanwhile, Mickey finds himself surprisingly interested in the third sister, Holly (Dianne Wiest), whom he couldn’t have had less in common with years ago. The tangled web of relationships is very effectively done, but just as affecting is Allen’s portrayal of the city he loves. Sprawling Upper West Side apartments and SoHo lofts abound. And when an architect bachelor takes two enchanted ladies on a car tour of the city’s most striking buildings, it’s really Allen puffing out his chest in pride. For despite Allen’s trysts, in reality and in the cinema, for all of his infatuations, confusions, and neuroses, it’s New York that he loves most of all.