New York Stories

March 10th, 1989


New York Stories

No valid json found

A middle-aged artist obsessed with his pretty young assistant, a precocious 12 year old living in a hotel, and a neurotic lawyer with a possessive mother make up three stories.

Release Year: 1989

Rating: 6.2/10 (8,321 voted)

Director: Woody Allen

Stars: Woody Allen, Nick Nolte, Rosanna Arquette

A middle-aged artist obsessed with his pretty young assistant, a precocious 12 year old living in a hotel, and a neurotic lawyer with a possessive mother make up three stories.

Writers: Richard Price, Woody Allen

Woody Allen - Sheldon (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Marvin Chatinover - Psychiatrist (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Mae Questel - Mother (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Mia Farrow - Lisa (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Molly Regan - Sheldon's Secretary (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Ira Wheeler - Mr. Bates (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Joan Bud - Board Member (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Jessie Keosian - Aunt Ceil (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Michael Rizzo - Waiter (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
George Schindler - Shandu, The Magician (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Bridgit Ryan - Rita (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Larry David - Theater Manager (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Paul Herman - Detective Flynn / Clifford the Doorman / Cop (segments "Life Lessons" - "Life without Zoe" - "Oedipus Wrecks")
Herschel Rosen - Store Clerk (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")
Lola André - Citizen (segment "Oedipus Wrecks")

Taglines: One City. Three Stories Tall.

Release Date: 10 March 1989

Filming Locations: 5th Avenue, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $15,000,000 (estimated)

Gross: $10,763,469 (USA)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

At 33 minutes, Francis Ford Coppola's segment is the shortest. Woody Allen's clocks in at 40 minutes, while Martin Scorsese's runs to 45 minutes.

Zoe: [to her mother about her Joan Crawford-styled dress] A woman shouldn't have bigger shoulders than a man.

User Review

New York, New York


The anthology that include three short films that take place in New York City was made by three great American directors, Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, and Francis Ford Coppola.

"Life Lessons" directed by Martin Scorsese, literally took my breath away - it made me want to rewatch all Scorsese's films (with the one exception, GONY, though). What a magnificent work - visually it is as powerful as the painting Nolte's Lionel was painting. Combining in one short film Procul Harum's "A whiter shade of pale" and Puccini's "Nessun Dorma" from "Turandot" was a stroke of genius. This film is an ode to the power of talent; it is about greatness and curse of the gift, not about love to the woman. The best scene of the film and I'd say one of the best ever made about the Artist's work is Nolte triumphantly painting his masterpiece - his love, desire, lust, cries, whispers, tears, and humiliations magically transform with every stroke of his brush into the immortal, triumphant, brilliant work of art. By the time the painting is finished, he would need a new source of inspiration and self-torture, and the cycle will repeat over again. Devilishly clever portrait of an Artist as Not a Young Man. 9.5/10

I loved Woody Allen's "Oedipus Wrecks" and I think it is very funny and touching. Looks like Allen has met mothers or grandmothers like Mrs. Millstein in real life and his little gem is his love-hate letter to them. In the end, mom always knows what is best for her little boy. Mae Questel and Julie Kavner (Marge Simpson) were wonderful. Woody's face after his mom "disappears" and the scene when he practically makes love to the chicken drumstick are pure delight; also the commentary that New York is used to everything and readily accepts the crazy situation - it is so true. One of the best Allen's films I've seen lately - I am very glad that I finally saw it.

Larry David ("Seinfeld", "Curb Your Enthusiasm") plays the Theater Manager. It made me think if Estelle Costanza created by David and Mrs. Millstein (Woody's omnipresent mother) have a lot in common in making the lives of their sons miserable and smothering them with their merciless love? 9/10

Coppola's "Life Without Zoë" was much weaker than Scorsese's and Allan's stories and paled in comparison - this episode "from the lives of the reach and beautiful" was pretty and cute but you can skip it. 5/10


Comments are closed.