‘Rifkin’s Festival’ Review: Woody Allen Makes Fun of Film History in Strange Self-Reflective Comedy

‘Rifkin’s Festival’ Review: Woody Allen Makes Fun of Film History in Strange Self-Reflective Comedy
These days, every new Woody Allen film invites the same question: Is it possible to review the film and not its disgraced filmmaker? “Rifkin’s Festival” makes this challenge especially daunting: All the action takes place at the San Sebastian Film Festival, where the film opened this year’s edition. Wallace Shawn stars as a revered but neurotic director with romantic delusions. And if it seems like Allen is really asking for it, there’s one more factor working against the 84-year-old filmmaker: The film is far from vintage Allen and would struggle to find a mass audiences even before it turned against him.

Having said that, “Rifkin’s Festival” is a notch above middling Allen comedies like last year’s “A Rainy Day in New York,” thanks to delightful turns from Shawn and Gina Gershon as well as some zany stabs at film history in a series of black-and-white dream
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