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Getting Even

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  3,629 ratings  ·  138 reviews
After three decades of prodigious film work (and some unfortunate tabloid adventures as well), it's easy to forget that Woody Allen began his career as one heck of a great comedy writer. Getting Even, a collection of his late '60s magazine pieces, offers a look into Allen's bag of shtick, back when it was new. From the supposed memoirs of Hitler's barber: "Then, in January...more
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Published by Audible, Inc. (first published 1966)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Paquita Maria Sanchez
I dedicate this review to my friend David Vicsotka. Here is a man that LOVES engaging in those early-in-the-dating-process, sprawling conversations about art, literature, and film that either A) get you laid, and ideally lead to further discussions concerning the wonders of the creative process coupled with additional sexual encounters or B) lead to awkward conversations, reconsideration of sexual interest, fears that this person is a boorish dumb-ass, fears within that potential dumb-ass that y...more
Mariel
Dec 23, 2010 Mariel rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hermit the frog
Recommended to Mariel by: Gonzo style
Review #1: The Lists

I would do a list of my favorite Woody Allen films but I've already done so elsewhere on goodreads. I know it happened in 2003 (or maybe it was 2004. I remember the pain if not the exact date) that these asshole Wes Anderson fans made fun of me for having such a long list of favorite Woody Allen films.

Times that Wes Anderson made me look like an idiot:
1. His stupid fans ganged up on me for having a long list of favorite films. Okay, if my favorite filmmaker was Wes Anderson m...more
Punk
May 01, 2009 Punk rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Punk by: Sab
Shelves: short-stories
Humor. These absurd little pieces read like they were written by a computer program that learned to write from Mad Libs. The humor is completely random and utterly dry. The stories aren't laugh-out-loud funny -- they're more likely to surprise an admiring snort out of you -- but they are funny (if sometimes funny-strange), crafted with skill and fearlessness (comedy: the one thing Woody Allen isn't afraid of?).

Some favorites: "The Schmeed Memoirs" - Hitler's barber; "Death Knocks" - Death plays...more
Jane Stewart
This was ok, but I didn’t smile as much as I hoped. My mind wandered at times.

I like his quirky mind. Woody Allen was ok as narrator of the audiobook.

DATA:
Narrative mode: mostly 3rd person. Unabridged audiobook length: 2 hrs and 43 mins. Swearing language: Jesus used once or twice. Sexual content: nothing explicit. Book copyright: 1971. Genre: humorous thoughts.
Nilo
Si la finalidad del humor snob es el voltear los ojos hacía arriba al terminar de leer cada renglón y hacer bostezar al lector, es un excelente libro.
Fernanda
Hacía tiempo que no releía algo, pero es que realmente necesitaba hacerlo.

Es la clase de libros que sólo alguien acostumbrado a su manera de escribir, de su clase de chistes y su humor snob-intelectual, puede disfrutar. De otro modo puede verse como un montón de palabras pegadas y lanzadas al azar. Sin mencionar que los contenidos culturales que poseen son de alto calibre y sin tener un conocimiento previo, al menos de nombres, puede volverse algo tedioso o confuso, o idiota. Lo que más les gus...more
Jeff Crompton
I picked this one off the shelves a couple of days ago. I've read it a couple of times over the years, but not recently. This time, more than ever, it struck me as brilliant. The humor is a mixture of the intellectual and the ridiculous, and that mixture appeals to me strongly. I particularly enjoyed the final piece, "Mr. Big," which reads like something Mickey Spillane would have written if he had been a philosophy major.
Buggz79
It's a gem of a book.

A collection of hilarious and slightly jarring stories told from different view points including a philosophical detective investigating the death of god, a member of a revolutionary uprising in a south american republic...

Well worth a read.
Tony
Allen, Woody. GETTING EVEN. (1971). ****1/2. This was the first collection of Allen’s thoughts, essays, and phantasmagoria. Most of the pieces were first published in the New Yorker magazine, and are all stand-alone. This is the second time I have worked my way through this book, not realizing that time was passing, and all of a sudden finding I was at the end. On the way I have been entertained and amazed at the variety of Allen’s turgid imagination. Pieces like, “Death Knocks,” and A Little Lo...more
Amene
(وودی آلن)"فرقی نداره توی کدوم گروه باشی ، قطعا توی اون یکی گروه بیشتر خوش می گذره"
وودی از نوابغه بازهم میگم شک نکنین!
این کتاب در فارسی دو تا ترجمه داره یکی کنت دراکولا و داستان های دیگر و ترجمه ی دیگر که ترجمه نگار شاطریان است با نام "حالا بی حساب شدیم"نمی دونم توی ترجمه دیگر هم این مقدار حذفیات و سه نقطه داخل کروشه که نشانه ی سانسور هست وجود دارد یا نه. ولی با تمام این احوالات این هم یکی دیگر از کارهای معرکه ی وودی آلن نابغه ی دوران ما بود خصوصا دو داستان "عقاید فلسفی من"و"اطلاعیه های بهاری"...more
Benjamin
A collection of Woody Allen humor pieces; the first of three that I grew up with. Getting Even mostly has the sort of short humor pieces that would run in the New Yorker.

Let's break it down:

Parodies of academic discourse:
The Metterling Lists (lit analysis of a guy's laundry lists)
My Philosophy
Spring Bulletin (class description)
Hassidic Tales (tales and folklore analysis)
Conversations with Helmholtz (interview with great psychoanalyst
The Discovery and Use of the Fake Ink Blot (history of pranks)

H...more
Rich Meyer
Woody Allen's three books are some of the funniest stuff I've ever read. I. thoroughly enjoyed them as a child, though I did spend a lot of time in the library looking up some of the more obscure references. This Take the Money and Run- and What's Up Tiger Lily-Allen, not the much more serious leaning director of Manhattan or Interiors.

Getting Even is the first collection and probably the most sublime of the three. Definitely worth a read for any fan of erudite comedy.
Carl
The best of a brilliant trio of Woody Allen's books -- this is humor writing at its best, most literate, most intelligent. When I was looking up the difference between "heuristics" and "hermeneutics" I realized how deep I was. This is probably the funniest volume of anything I have ever read. I can admit that he's got a formula that sometimes falls flat, but pieces like "The Gossage-Vardebedian Papers" and "Viva Vargas!" hit the perfect notes at the perfect pace.
Rozonda
Una obra maestra. Uno de los libros más divertidos que existen. Un feroz ataque a la cultura de alguien extremadamente culto y con mucha mala uva :D

Me encanta.
Am Jam
"How could you, Kaiser?"

She was fading fast, but I managed to get it in, in time.
"The manifestation of the universe as a complex idea unto itself as opposed to being in or outside the true Being of itself is inherently a conceptual nothingness or Nothingness in relation to any abstract form of existing or to exist or having existed in perpetuity and not subject to laws of physicality or motion or ideas relating to non-matter or the lack of objective Being or subjective otherness."

It was a subtle...more
Tecni
Vuelvo a repetir algo que dije hace bien poco (¿ayer?): últimamente solo caen en mis manos libros con contenidos absurdos y que pretenden hacer gracia; primero fue Un general confederado de Big Sur, después Moscú-Petushkí y ahora este; pero este viene con trampa, porque al autor ya le conocemos todos. La verdad es que el libro me llegó de rebote porque otra persona había decidido que ya no lo quería y a mí me da pena decir que no a un libro. Es comida rápida, de pocas páginas, letra gorda y capí...more
Lausº
Woody Allen es todo un personaje; es un conocido director, actor, escritor y guionista. Este libro es una compilación de sus primeras colaboraciones con el diario The New Yorker.

Nadie se salva, ni la filosofía, ni el arte, ni los revolucionarios, ni el psicoanálisis, incluso la propia muerte... Allen está decidido a enfrentarse a todos, en ocasiones a manera de ensayo, en otras como un dialogo o desde las disparatadas memorias de algún personaje. Debo destacar que para atacar de esta manera se n...more
Gris Elvia
Peculiar, sería la palabra específica para describirlo. Es una especie de comedia que requiere un nivel de cultura general muy elevada y rebuscada (cosa que me impidió disfrutar el libro a su totalidad), al principio pensé dejarlo tirado porque no entendía absolutamente nada, pero luego le fui agarrando el modo y me dejé llevar, sin cuestionarlo, por esa maraña de oraciones que no parecen tener sentido juntas, como él mismo dice "Soy un hombre con dificultades para escribir dos frases coherentes...more
Don S.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aniche
This feels like what the back page of Woody Allen's idea-notebook would read like. Smattered with absurdist pieces mostly around philosophy 'Getting Even' is a peek into Woody Allen's brain. His fantasy of being a contemporary of Hemingway, Fitzgerald and Picasso, which we later saw in his movie 'Midnight in Paris' can be traced back to 'A Twenties Memory'. However, the choicest parts of the entire book would have to be Mr. Big, Death Knocks, Count Dracula and the Schmeed Memoirs.
claire
honestly, i have no idea why such a small book took me so long to read. especially considering how much i enjoyed it. more than likely, i just didn't want it to end.

it's difficult to explain the magic of woody allen's writing. if you've seen a few of his films, then you will at least understand the nature of his humour - dry, witty and at times so sarcastic it almost comes across as sincerity.

this definitely translates into his short stories. it gives him the ability to take the most mundane (a...more
John
It was good. A lot of it was funny. But his type of humor rarely went beyond saying, basically, random shit. The most enjoyable part of it, for me, was how he wrapped his random shit. For instance, he would poke fun of psychiatrists, notes from WWII, general philosophical texts, and emulate their tone really well, and inside of that tone he put his random shit. Very enjoyable, but it got a bit tiring.
Justin
First Woody Allen book I have read, and I am sure it will not be the last! Typical Woody Allen humor: Smart, yet also goofy. I can definitely see an overlap between many of these stories and his films. Not all of the stories were great but I found myself laughing out loud for many of them. My favorites were The Schmeed Memoirs, Death Knocks (probably my favorite), Yes But Can the Steam Engine Do This?, and Hassidic Tales
Adam
I haven't read his other three collections of prose, but from this book my impression is that people who will especially like this are people who like Woody's sense of humour and his verbal dexterity and wit, and are prone to like absurd, esoteric jokes about philosophy and the ilk, but are not much interested in, or are otherwise unaffected by the heavily emotional and relationship-exploring nature of most post-Love and Death Allen features. I find I don't exactly love either Allen's straight d...more
Pardis Parto
خندیدن به.. خندیدن به از یک بازی شروع میشود. اختلالی کوتاه در نظرم نمادین یا یک جا به جایی بازیگوشانه در نظم جدی، خشک و مکرر زندگی. به این معنا، اگر خندیدن به... را از معنای غیراخلاقی آن تهی کنیم، باید بگویم که خندیدن همیشه به دستمایه ای، هرچند ناچیز نیاز دارد. به هر حال باید به چیزی خندید و بهترین دست مایه ها برای خندیدن، همیشه جدی ترین مسائل از کار درمی آیند.

وودی آلن در این مجموعه، انتقام خود را از مسائل مهمی همچون چاقی، جرایم سازماندهی شده، تحصیلات بزرگسالان، لیست های خشکشویی افراد مهم، روانک...more
Matt DeCostanza
The whole is thing is good (aside from his self-congratulatory pseudo-intellectual name-dropping shit), but I would have given it a good score based on "Count Dracula" alone.

Also great is "A Twenties Memories", a version of Midnight in Paris wherein most everyone is a pretentious idiot. It has a few hilarious lines.

"Gris was provincially Spanish, and Gertrude Stein used to say that only a true Spaniard could behave as he did; that is, he would speak Spanish and sometimes return to his family in...more
RØB
Apr 30, 2013 RØB rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to RØB by: Eric Von Damage
Eric Von Damage lent me a paperback copy of this and SIDE EFFECTS probably coming up on ten years ago, and I just now read them, finally. Some of the selections are certainly better than others. I think my favorites are THE GOSSAGE-VARDEBEDIAN PAPERS, which recount letters between two men playing correspondence chess, and A LITTLE LOUDER, PLEASE, about an intellectual who simply can't grasp the concept of pantomime. And while I don't like it quite as much as these two, the final selection MR. BI...more
Celeste
Debo decir que este libro merece un aplauso kilométrico, es estupendo. El humor que expresa Woody Allen en él es algo, al menos para mí, inigualable. Como dijo alguien alguna vez, si tuviera un sombrero, me lo quitaría, con la reverencia y todo.
Los cuentos, su absurda hilaridad, los nombres que utiliza, la forma de burlarse de ese todo muchas veces intocable, es lo que hizo que este libro en particular me encantara. Me hizo reír como pocos y mejoró muchísimo mi estado de ánimo en el momento adec...more
Chris
Never been a Woody Allen guy and this didn't change that. It's full of inanities, small absurdities, and attempts at randomness that come off like crappy Mad Libs. Dracula gets fooled by an eclipse. A fat man engorges because if God is everywhere he's in the food too ergo more intake means more divinity. To my eyes, it's just poorly executed satire. That said, "The Gossage and Vardebedian Papers" is one of the funnier stories I've ever read. Here, as two friends try to creatively cheat each othe...more
Letizia
I'll just say this: I couldn't stop laughing out loud from the first page to the last. If I ever get depressed, I will read this book again, and by the end of it life will seem so damn funny once more.
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Which story was your favorite? 2 12 Dec 29, 2013 08:44AM  
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10356
Woody Allen (born Allen Stewart Königsberg) is a three-time Academy Award-winning American film director, writer, actor, jazz musician, comedian and playwright. His large body of work and cerebral film style, mixing satire, wit and humor, have made him one of the most respected and prolific filmmakers in the modern era. Allen writes and directs his movies and has also acted in the majority of them...more
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“She wore a short skirt and a tight sweater and her figure described a set of parabolas that could cause cardiac arrest in a yak.” 27 likes
“These modern analysts! They charge so much. In my day, for five marks Freud himself would treat you. For ten marks, he would treat you and press your pants. For fifteen marks, Freud would let you treat him, and that included a choice of any two vegetables. Thirty dollars an hour! Fifty dollars an hour! The Kaiser only got twelve and a quarter for being Kaiser! And he had to walk to work! And the length of treatment! Two years! Five years! If one of us couldn’t cure a patient in six months we would refund his money, take him to any musical revue and he would receive either a mahogany fruit bowl or a set of stainless steel carving knives. I remember you could always tell the patients Jung failed with, as he would give them large stuffed pandas.” 10 likes
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