Sweet and Lowdown (1999)

SWEET AND LOWDOWN is Woody Allen's latest, a period comedy framed
as a faux doc-umentary starring Sean Penn as a colorful jazz gui-
tarist circa 1930 something.  Penn disappears into the often hil-
ariously crude character and his Oscar nomination last week was
every bit worth it, even if the same could be said for non-nomin-
ees Terence Stamp or Eddie Murphy.  (Ignored for THE LIMEY and
BOWFINGER, respectively.) Penn is perfect, but the scene-stealer
is wide-eyed newcomer Saman- tha Morton, also an Oscar nominee and
who plays a mute laundress from Coney Island.  She makes the movie
and, alas, makes us regret her replacement Uma Thurman, who plays
Penn's character's *second* notable (though barely memorable) love
interest.  Good music, too, if rather repetitive.  With Brian Mar-
kinson, Anthony LaPaglia, and Gretchen Mol.  (Rated "PG-13"/95 
Grade: B-

Copyright 2000 Michael J. Legeros
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