Old vs. New Films by Directors Who Have Seen the World Change

There are those master filmmakers whose careers, fortunately for us, have spanned decades. What happened between Woody Allen’s 1979 Manhattan and Woody Allen’s Manhattan of the 2000’s? How far had Stanley Kubrick been able to push it since Lolita? How has unpredictable aging of the director’s beloved stars changed the way they treat their pet themes? What happened since… dum dum dummm… the Internet? Here are our favorite old-timers who have seen the world change and — willingly and unwillingly — have shown it through their films.

Woody Allen

Dubbed the quintessential New Yorker, Woody Allen has shaped the city’s mythology for the rest of the country in many ways. How have thirty years changed Woody’s NYC? Well, that Gershwin-serenaded sheen and literary magic of Manhattan has rubbed off and his optimism has been diluted with seasoned cynicism and a dislike for transplants and tourists. Typical olde New Yorker neuroses. Whatever. Grumble grumble. Looks like the apartment sizes are still exaggerated to allow a film crew to fit onto the set of Whatever Works. That rotting Chinatown warehouse hole where Larry David’s character is supposedly slumming would probably be be rented as a quirky, pricey artist loft with vintage woodwork. Grumble grumble.

Manhattan (1979)

Whatever Works (2009)