‘Blue Jasmine’: A Woody Allen Woman Under the Influence



She walks, talks and looks money, and behaves as if she still had it. Didn’t she fly first-class from New York City to San Francisco? Yet Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) is broke. Her husband Hal (Alec Baldwin), a financial wizard who tumbled into Bernie Madoff ignominy, had cheated his investors with some sleazy pyramid schemes and his wife with every other female in sight. Now she must take refuge with her Bay Area sister Ginger (Sally Hawkins), for she has lost her husband, her home and her standing. All that remains is the upper-class fiction — Jasmine — that the college girl named Jeanette created, decades ago, to impress Hal. She hangs on to that persona from force of habit, and because it’s all she knows.

In a productive career as writer-director that now numbers 44 feature films in 44 years, Woody Allen has made comedies (the early…

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