Had he never seen REDS and SHOOT THE MOON? BABY BOOM and MARVIN'S ROOM? THE LITTLE DRUMMER GIRL and Woody Allen's Ingmar Bergman-esque drama, INTERIORS? Sometimes, even veteran film critics just don't get it. I think Best Actress Oscar winner may have been promoting her smooth, mature comedy SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE, co-starring Jack Nicholson, at the time. Entertainment reporter Neil Rosen, a good guy who's been the weekly movie critic for years on New York 1, the popular local all-news cable station, was interviewing Keaton and remarked that she usually doesn't play "strong women." My jaw dropped down to the toes of my sneakers. I blurted "Neil! You didn't just say that!" standing alone in my apartment as I watched. Ms. Keaton didn't exactly agree with him either. She won her Oscar for her delicious performance as the title character in Woody Allen's comedy classic, ANNIE HALL.
I first noticed the lean, lanky actress way back when I was a kid and saw the 1970 comedy LOVERS AND OTHER STRANGERS. That movie cast included Bea Arthur, Cloris Leachman, Anne Meara, Gig Young and Diane Keaton's future fellow cast member in THE GODFATHER, stout Richard S. Castellano. Remember the pop hit The Carpenters had with "For All We Know"? That tune was written for LOVERS AND OTHER STRANGERS and won the Oscar for Best Song.
Keaton's Best Actress Oscar nomination for ANNIE HALL was not the only one she received in her film career and ANNIE HALL was not her only film released in 1977. The other one was not a comedy. It was dark, discomforting and sexual.
The much-respected actress Tuesday Weld got a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for playing the teacher's sister. The Broadway musical star of NO STRINGS and MAN OF LA MANCHA, singer/actor Richard Kiley, is the domineering Catholic father. LOOKING FOR MR. GOODBAR was directed by Richard Brooks.
The Thursday, July 14th, primetime line-up on TCM begins with Scorcese's ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE at 8p Eastern/5p Pacific. That's followed by THE STEPFORD WIVES and then LOOKING FOR MR. GOODBAR.
This movie proves that Diane Keaton has indeed played "strong women" characters. Complicated characters. And she's played them quite well.
After you see this severe Richard Brooks drama with Diane Keaton's compelling performance, you might appreciate Keaton's comedy brilliance in Woody Allen's ANNIE HALL even more.