I’m in the process of moving out of Allen Hall after eight very happy years on the seminary staff. I’ve had one or two farewell gatherings, and some lovely gifts. The most thoughtful and unexpected one was from the seminarians themselves.
I thought they might give me something predictable like a bottle of wine or a manual of theology to set me straight after all the wild lectures I have given them. Instead, at a farewell dinner near the end of term, they presented me with a vintage 1977 poster for Woody Allen’s Annie Hall: one of the smaller ‘lobby style’ prints, with a certificate of authentication pasted on the back.
What a great idea! We just happen to have a vintage film poster shop round the corner – Limelight Movie Art (this is Chelsea…). They told me the lovely story of going into the shop. Knowing how particular I am, instead of random buying, they found a post on this blog about my favourite films of all time, and took this list in with them. They showed it to the shop assistant, who spent a few minutes perusing the list, looked back up to the seminarians, and uttered the immortal words, ‘Your friend has very expensive tastes…’ I took that as an indirect compliment from one film buff to another.
In the end, they opted for a small Annie Hall poster rather than a large but apparently less visually interesting poster for 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s mounted, but I need to frame it and hang it in Newman House when I arrive. I’d love to start collecting, but just look at the prices…
This image I’ve pasted above isn’t the poster they got me, but it’s the only one I could find copyright free online. My one is Diane Keaton leaning over Woody Allen on the sofa, with him completely oblivious to her attentions as he reads the newspaper.
Oh, and by the way, in case you clicked on this post because of the title above, my new two greatest films of all time, that have risen quite unexpectedly to the top over the last two years, are The Tree of Life and The Place Beyond the Pines.