Manhattan (1979) - Rotten Tomatoes


Manhattan (1979)



Critic Consensus: One of Woody Allen's early classics, Manhattan combines modern, bittersweet humor and timeless romanticism with unerring grace.

Manhattan Photos

Movie Info

Woody Allen combines witty dialogue, the music of George Gershwin, and atmospheric location shooting in one of his best romantic comedies. Isaac, a neurotic writer in his forties, is romantically involved with Tracy, a 17-year-old student. But things get complicated when he starts to date Mary, his best friend's ex-mistress.

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Woody Allen
as Isaac Davis
Diane Keaton
as Mary Wilke
Victor Truro
as Party Guest
Tisa Farrow
as Party Guest
Helen Hanft
as Party Guest
Bella Abzug
as Guest of Honor
Gary Weis
as Television Director
Kenny Vance
as Television Producer
Charles Levin
as TV Actor
Karen Allen
as TV Actor
David Rasche
as TV Actor
Damion Sheller
as Isaac's Son, Willie
Wallace Shawn
as Jeremiah
Mark Linn-Baker
as Shakespearean Actor
Frances Conroy
as Shakespearean Actor
Bill Anthony
as Porsche Owner
John Doumanian
as Porsche Owner
Ray Serra
as Pizzeria Waiter
Raymond Serra
as Pizzeria Waiter
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News & Interviews for Manhattan

Critic Reviews for Manhattan

All Critics (69) | Top Critics (19)

Allen has always had difficulty harmonising his comic talents and the skittering form of his films: Manhattan is a temporary resolution gratefully received.

July 31, 2018 | Full Review…

What George M. Cohan did with the Stars and Stripes in 1919, Allen is doing with neurosis in 1979: waving it, telling us that as long as we're proud of it, we're all pretty damned OK. That's the real romance of Manhattan.

January 8, 2018 | Full Review…

A pretty and problematic picture that leaves a sour taste in the mouth.

June 14, 2017 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

With Manhattan, a sparkling romance about the overspecialized anxieties of overintellectualized New Yorkers, Woody Allen has bounced back from the sobriety of "Interiors" to an exhilarating new comic high.

December 18, 2015 | Full Review…

The film should not come as a complete surprise to anyone who has been paying attention to Allen's doings lately. This is the movie that Annie Hall hinted at and to which last year's Interiors, flawed as it was, seems to have served as a necessary prelude.

February 10, 2014 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Allen serves up a nostalgia that was utterly of its time; he incarnates an idea of the city that, even now, remains as strong as its reality and refracts his disappointed ideals into high existential crises.

September 3, 2012

Audience Reviews for Manhattan

This is a classic Woody Allen film, complete with all the classic Woody Allen hallmarks, and, you know what? I actually had to watch it twice because upon completion of one viewing, I was actually stunned and unable to really decide how I felt about the film. That sort of thing almost never happens, either. It was weird. I watched it, and truly was unable to decide how I felt. I didn't love it, but I didn't hate it. So, I gave it another watch, and any sort of issues I had with this film (it mostly has to do with the unlikeability and unsympatheticness of the characters) kinda worked themselves out on the second viewing. I actually like that the characters, especially Woody's are rather slimy, creepy jerks. It adds to the fun and nuttiness of it all. That, and it takes real talent to successfully pull off a dramedy where a twice divorced 42 year-old is dating a 17 year-old girl whom he doesn't love, despite the strong feelings she has for him. Plus, there's lots of typical pretentious conversations about art, music, and philosophy that just really sing. Also, this was the first time Allen made not only a black and white film, but one that was also visually stunning, something that doesn't apply to the vast majority of his works. This is a true love letter to Manhattan, and the gorgeous cinematography, excellent Gershwin score, and Allen's crisp writing make it truly the masterpiece that everyone hails it to be, and I think this film really truly does stand the test of time since I was forced to give it multiple watches and lots of thought before deciding how I really felt about it. Now THAT's a sign of genius.

Chris Weber
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

It struggles to engage throughout, but it has a strong start, great acting, and is definitely worth seeing as so to experience the genius of Woody Allen's witty humor.

Matthew Samuel Mirliani
Matthew Samuel Mirliani

Super Reviewer

This classic's use of location is close to perfect, but unfortunately the story taking place in this romanticized metropolis is at its best standard and at its worst a bit creepy. If you've seen Annie Hall, the rambling wit and wisdom here is pretty much identical. If not for the beauty of the cinematography, I'd be hard pressed to find anything particularly special about this as opposed to more focused and more unique Allen movies.

Sam Barnett
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

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