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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The best Woody Allen film never made

No, I’m not referring to his future movie in Barcelona (which hopefully will be better than the vastly overrated Match Point), but a great short story of his from 1977.

Kugelmass - an over-the-hill humanities professor – is frustrated with his second marriage to an "oaf", and desires the rejuvenating spark of romance. A shysty magician named Persky comes to his aid by transporting him into the classics of world literature, where he wines and dines Madame Bovary herself. The problem is, can he handle his fiction and his reality at the same time?

She's young and nubile, and I'm here a few pages after Leon and just before Rodolphe. By showing up during the correct chapters, I've got the situation knocked.

Classic Allen wise cracks meshed with meta-fiction and a nod to Cervantes.

"Relax," Persky told him. "You'll get a coronary."

"Relax. The man says relax. I've got a fictional character stashed in a hotel room, and I think my wife is having me tailed by a private shamus."

You can read The Kugelmass Episode, here.