Greece in the News: Woody Allen prefers Plato

While promoting his new movie, director Woody Allen made some comments on the Greek financial crisis that can only be described as “interesting”:

“It is horrible. Every day I open the paper and read about Greece’s disaster. In the birthplace of tragedy, philosophy, sciences and democracy. We read that it will soon leave Europe and the euro. That unemployment has reached nightmarish levels and that the end is coming soon. It’s a pity. Instead of Plato and Socrates, all of us who have no idea about economy, read these creepy things. It’s a pity,” Allen said.

Sure, it’s a pity … especially when you’re not willing to do anything about it except complain about how bad news spoils your breakfast. When reporters asked Allen if he’d film in Greece, he said yes — if Greeks were willing to pay for it:

“Of course I would like to make a movie in Athens. Provided that the [Greek] authorities will contribute to financing production. As has happened with all the films I shot in London, Paris, Madrid and Rome. Besides, I have visited Athens in the past.”

Okay, let’s be fair: this is a man who has built a career out of being a self-centered neurotic. In the ’70s, that was even popular. But now that we’ve hit the 21st century, I’m not sure the public appreciates such laissez-faire. Asking a nation that is billions of euros in the hole to pay millions for your movie might only be a drop in the bucket — after all, a few million must be only a few hours’ of interest on Greek loans — but it’s also the yearly salaries of a few dozen Greek public-sector workers. Saying “I’d love to make a movie there, if you pay me” smacks of “let them eat cake”.

Although “philosophy is one of the ‘tools’ of [his] brain”, it seems like Woody Allen may have some more learning to do.

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