Friday, April 10, 2009

Results Suggest "Annie Hall" a Gateway Film

A recent study conducted by the scientists at The Netflix Institute for Neuroscience (NIN) has shown early evidence that people who watched and enjoy Woody Allen's 1977 romantic comedy "Annie Hall", along with two other variable films, may go on to demonstrate enjoyment of any number of other films.

For example, of "Annie Hall" lovers (AHLs) in the study, those who also enjoyed "Hannah and Her Sisters" (another Allen film) and "City of God" (director Katia Lund) have been shown to have an appreciation for the critically acclaimed 2007 German film "The Lives of Others." Dr. Phillip A. Nunemaker, MD, MPH of the NIN explains that "Neural firings in the brain allow AHLs who enjoyed the ingenious film-editing in 'Annie Hall', the tumultuous marriages in 'Hannah and Her Sisters,' and the similar poster art design for 'City of God' are likely to enjoy the havoc that the KGB inflicts on a loving couple in this powerful but quiet film, constructed of hidden thoughts and secret desires."

Interestingly, removing "City of God" from this equation and substituting it with "Do The Right Thing" will produce an AHL who may also enjoy "The Life and Times of Harvey Milk."Leave in "Do The Right Thing" and swap out "Hannah" for Wes Anderson's "Bottle Rocket" and the subject is likely to enjoy "The Devil and Daniel Johnston", a documentary about the eponymous troubled musical genius.(1)

Why "Annie Hall," the crown jewel in Woody Allen's film career? Scientists don't have a conclusive answer yet, which is why the research must continue. "There's definitely something to it," says Merriwinter. "The participants of the study each ranked over three quarters of a thousand (750) films on a 5-star ranking system, and those who ranked "Annie Hall"at below 4 stars were shown to dislike most other films.

Good news is on the horizon for those who find themselves unable to enjoy "Annie Hall," a film filled with poignant performances and devastating humor. As diagnoses and gene research improves, scientists are consistently finding that enjoyment for the creative milestone that is "Annie Hall" begins at the genetic level. While surgical procedures are not yet available for humans, in early experiments on lab rats, Merriwinter and her colleagues have effectively shut down gene expression in rats who dislike the film which marks the beginning of the second phase of Allen's career. The studies are the most definitive to date showing that a love for "Annie Hall" is accessible and can be controlled by synthetic and natural molecules.

"With this information, one could easily turn on or off an individual's love for "Annie Hall",
winner of the 1977 Academy Award for Best Picture, as well as enjoy new films by changing mutant gene sequences back to normal," Merriwinter said, adding that, "Lah-dee-dah, lah-dee-dah. La la."


Interference with expression of injected synthetic "Annie Hall" gene ("AH"G). Wild-type "AH"G at the one-cell stage; b, "AH"G together with "TI"G ("The Insider" gene); c, "AH"G together with "TI"G and ("Being John Malkovich" gene) produces a love for "Good Night and Good Luck." Scale bar represents 20 µm.
What can you do to support the research of Netflix? Visit www.netflix.com and a pledge your donation. $4.99 is enough to provide meals for one AHL for an entire month (they mostly eat lentils and rice). $47.99 per month is enough to cover the expenses of one AHLs' subscriptions to the New Yorker for two weeks (the average AHL reads the magazine with such vigor that they will have destroyed three copies before making it through "The Talk of The Town" section. To show their gratitude, Netflix will allow you to borrow between one and eight copies of "Annie Hall" at a time for you to enjoy this Woody Allen classic which evinces a sophisticated understanding of the potential for editing and camera movement for comic potential.

Footnote:
1 - An anomaly in the study revealed that a viewer with these exactly three preference will also inexplicably enjoy "Amores Perros" (Director Alejandro González Iñarritu's internationally acclaimed debut film which recounts three tales that unfold and intertwine on the brutal streets of Mexico City) and "In The Mood For Love" (Kar Wai Wong's delicately mannered tale of platonic romance set in 1962 Hong Kong).