A series of skits that argue against Emily Dickinson’s (Molly Shannon) having been a pompous old maid and in favor of her having carried on a tender love affair with her sister-in-law Susan (Susan Ziegler). Woody Allen goofs on writer and director Madeleine Olnek’s exposition-burdened narration and the manner in which she directs characters to speak directly into the camera. Set in mid-1800’s Amherst, the story spans three different time frames, each one indistinguishable from the next. The flat lighting and even flatter production design — damn those off white composite plantation shutters — conspire to give the various settings the look of late-2018 IKEA. Watch as Emily plays along when visiting with a doddering Judge whose favorite work by Emily Bronte is Wuthering Jane. I didn’t think my knee would ever stop bleeding what with all the slapping it took. I’m all for irreverence, but not at the expense of style and logic. A rental, if that.
Length: 1 hour, 24 minutes