Director: Woody Allen

82 minutes| U.S.A.| 1987| Colour| 35mm

Quipped the Washington Post about this film: ‘In Vermont no one can hear you scream.’ As summer draws to a close in a secluded country house, emotions of anguish and frustration surface amongst the sophisticated occupants. An egocentric actress (Elaine Stritch) locks horns with her suicidal daughter (Mia Farrow); a frustrated writer (Sam Waterston) swoons over a married woman (Dianne Wiest); a melancholy family friend (Denholm Elliott) quivers with unrequited love.

A chamber-piece which Allen recast and re-shot when his first version did not satisfy him, September is finely acted, with a subtle use of cinematic space in and around the characters to suggest their feelings of hesitation and entrapment. Not a lot happens but two dramatic moments – house-hunters inadvertently bursting in on a romantic tryst, the daughter spilling the beans about her mother – are beautifully timed and worth the wait.

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