Essentially three separate tales that intertwine at times, HANNAH AND HER SISTERS is one of writer-director Woody Allen's most complex films and the first one in which his neurotic character is given a happy ending.
The picture takes place over a couple of years, framed by Thanksgiving dinners. Hannah (Mia Farrow) is married to Elliot (Michael Caine), a business manager for rock stars. She used to be married to Mickey (Allen), a TV producer. Hannah's sisters are Lee (Barbara Hershey)--who's living with
Frederick (Max von Sydow), a witty, bitter SoHo artist--and Holly (Dianne Wiest), an actress who's a bundle of nerves. Elliot harbors a passion for Lee and eventually makes it known to her. She succumbs, guilt-ridden for betraying Hannah. Holly, a former cocaine addict, can no longer contain her
envy of Hannah--the oldest, "perfect" sister, who has what appears to be a blissful existence.
The plot could easily have been an afternoon soap opera, but Allen has infused it with wit, a superb cast and his usual "the best direction is the least direction" style, so that the camera never calls attention to itself.
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