Sometimes critics just don’t get fun films. With a lame title — that I’ve now warmed to, equally lame poster art, and a Tomatometer score of 39%, I was expecting to be bored or annoyed with Irrational Man. But Joaquin Phoenix intrigues me, and so does Woody Allen, and Emma Stone doesn’t hurt the cause — so I decided to give it a shot.
The Rotten Tomatoes consensus could not be more wrong:
Irrational Man may prove rewarding for the most ardent Joaquin Phoenix fans or Woody Allen apologists, but all others most likely need not apply
Malarkey! Irrational Man is not Woody Allen’s best effort, but this is a delightful, fun film. A little clunkiness hampers the early going, and throughout there is a light air of contrivance that encumbers even his better films of late, such as Blue Jasmine. That didn’t prevent Blue Jasmine from being one of the best films of 2013; Irrational Man is not up to Blue Jasmine’s level, but it is still quite entertaining, and Woody Allen deserves credit for making a very different movie here. He may not knock it out of the park every time, but his pictures prove fresh and inventive from one to the next. 7/10