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Compiled from Woody Allen's legendary standup routines of the mid 1960s, Standup Comic is an absolute necessity for any acolyte of the man's solid work from his Casino Royale and New Yorker phase.
"Here's a good example of oral contraception. I asked a girl to go to bed with me, and she said 'No.'"
Between a youthful stint as a TV gag man and his groundbreaking films of the 1970s, Allen tried his hand at standup. He was, predictably, a success. Taken from nightclub dates in 1964, '65, and '68, Standup Comic shows how stylistically similar he was to contemporaries like Bill Cosby but also how his absurd flights of imagination made him utterly unique.
"I took a puff of the wrong cigarette at a fraternity dance once. The cops had to come and get me. I broke two teeth trying to give a hickey to the Statue of Liberty."
Now that he's a junior-varsity Ingmar Bergman, it's easy to forget that Allen's first public face was that of a world-class zhlub--a rumpled redhead who shared stories of analysis, sexual frustration, and failure. The long-form tales featured on Standup Comic (including Allen's famous bit featuring a moose) provide plenty of laughs as well as an early glimpse at this protean comic genius.

Standup Comic :

If you think New Orleans jazz is dated, peppy and thin, and that Woody Allen is nothing more than an eccentric celebrity filmmaker, try this CD. Not only is the music fine and intelligent, but Woody shows us a side of him that his films don't capture. There's a sadness in the best pieces that goes beyond wistfulness, a beauty in unexpected places. Woody is serious about the music, but not preachy. The band and he make a lively, compelling, and thoughtful statement about music being one of the best aspects of existence.

Woody Allen's love of classic jazz shows when the most popular songs from his movies are gathered onto one disc. From the opening track, "As Time Goes By," it becomes obvious how important Allen's music really is to his films. Although Play It Again, Sam is an obvious tribute to Casablanca, Allen's use of "As Time Goes By" is effective and quite memorable for different reasons than in the classic original. And what would the opening credits to Radio Days be without Harry James' brilliant take on "Flight of the Bumblebee"? That song sets the pace for the movie better than any other song could have and, though it is quite famous for other reasons, Allen made it his own when it was heard in the film's context. This set of music proves that Allen has the eerie ability to take a popular standard and set it so well to one of his films that the listener can pinpoint the exact scene in which the song was used. That is no easy task, especially with the caliber of the songs found here, so as a collection this is not only filled with wonderful jazz, but also serves as a good reminder of Allen's best work.

The first classical music I remember hearing was on movie soundtracks--the animated cartoons of my childhood in which the characters would chase, trick, and bash each other to the tunes of Liszt's Hungarian rhapsodies and overtures by Rossini and Suppe. This music was used not because it was great, but because it was full of action and out of copyright--a lot cheaper (and probably better) than hiring a living composer. Woody Allen may have a nobler motivation in his decision to use classics on his soundtracks, and his selection of music, from Bach to Prokofiev, is more sophisticated. This superbly miscellaneous collection will be full of happy discoveries for many listeners. It may also help you to identify tunes that you hear in a movie and can't get out of your mind.

Barcelona has long been considered one of the most romantic cities in the world - a place where the human heart has been known to explore new and uncharted territory, leaving any preconceptions about passion and romance forever changed. The city's timeless mystique makes it the perfect setting for director Woody Allen's newest film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, a breezy romantic comedy starring Javier Bardem, Penélope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson. The film's eclectic mix of music reflects the storyline's passionate yet lighthearted tone. The bouncy, Spanish-sung title song, "Barcelona," was written and recorded by Giulia y los Tellarini, a little-known indie band from Barcelona. As might be expected from a collection of Spanish music, instrumental guitar pieces make up the lion's share of the soundtrack.

Vicky Cristina Barcelona-Soundtrack :

Two young American women, Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) come to Barcelona for a summer holiday. Vicky (Rebecca Hall) is sensible and engaged to be married; Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) is emotionally and sexually adventurous. In Barcelona, they're drawn into a series of unconventional romantic entanglements with Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem), a charismatic painter, who is still involved with his tempestuous ex-wife Maria Elena (Penélope Cruz). Set against the luscious Mediterranean sensuality of Barcelona, 'Vicky Cristina Barcelona' is Woody Allen's funny and open-minded celebration of love in all its configurations.