...last nite I went to see Woodie Allens's new movie, "Melinda and Melinda." It is the story of a woman (Melinda) as two different playwrights would tell it: one as a comedy, the other as a tragedy. I enjoyed the movie, tho one of the characters was pure neurotic-Woodie-Allen formula. That's a shame: this was the same character Allen himself plays in his movies, and it has gotten more than a bit tiresome- he has descended into self-parody in an otherwise good film.
Back to guns: One of the characters confesses that she murdered her husband and went to prison. In describing the lead up she says that she drove to another state and bought a handgun and a box of "bullets" from a dealer . No questions asked, she says. So simple for murderers to get handguns, no laws broken.
Well, bad news, Woodie: She and the dealer committed felonies. A private citizen cannot buy a handgun in another state and take delivery there. She would have had to have the dealer transfer it to a dealer in her home state. She could then have picked it up from the second dealer- after complying with her own state's laws. So, both she and her dealer would have been committing a felony. No questions asked? That's another felony, Woody. Dealers are required by federal law to not only "ask questions," they are required to ask them on paper and get the answers on that paper, and to keep that paper for federal inspection. Failure to do so is a federal crime. Lying on that form is a federal crime.
I have no particular reason to think Woodie Allen deliberately misrepresented gun laws. I think he is ignorant and doesn't care to become informed because he knows he is right. He was just taking a casual political swipe at an issue about which all right thinking New Yorkers have assumptions at variance with reality.
Perhaps, to be fair and since this character was not portrayed as a real person but as a playwright's interpretation of a real person, we are to believe that Allen deliberately characterized the playwright as ignorant. But I doubt it.
Anyway, it was a passing moment in an otherwise decent movie, self-parody aside.