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Cassandra’s Dream

Is this London-set crime drama Woody Allen’s lowest ebb so far? Between drab directing, a flatlining script and an atmosphere that aims for modern noir but skews into ITV drama, it might just be. Partly the fault lies in what should be a fizzing set of principles – Ewan McGregor and Collin Farrell star as sad-sack siblings who agree to a terrible deed to fix their money woes. But their Celtic tongues wrap awkwardly around the script from Allen – still on hiatus from his native New York – and the film’s rhythm and flow feels unsettlingly off-kilter. But the real problem is a lack of substance: despite clunky classical allusions, the story is minor, and there’s not a shred of irony or self-awareness to give it depth. Quite the opposite, actually, as Phillips Glass’ brick-subtle score earnestly fanfares every dramatic to and fro. The result is that when it’s not distractingly lifeless, Cassandra’s Dream is just boring.

This text originally appeared in Total Film magazine

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