Loving Vincent, from Duncan Coker

December 12, 2017 |

 Loving Vincent is a visually stunning movie and highly recommended. The production is a blending of animation and art as each frame has been hand-painted in the style of Van Gogh often using one of his actual works as a base. The film tells the story of the last years of his life introducing us to the characters of a small French town where he lived and painted; they include his friends, benefactors, doctors, contemporaries as well as the countryside which inspired his work. The story puzzles over the mystery surrounding his death as the narrator seeks to deliver a final letter from Vincent to his brother. It moves very slowly but this is welcome as the unfolding art is so enjoyable to watch. In his short 8 years as a painter Van Gogh produced 800 works. Though he sold but one, he never waivered from his singular devotion to his craft. This films reintroduces us to his work. It is like gazing at one of his painting for 90 minutes and really absorbing the impact. Would love to hear Marion's review.





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1 Comment so far

  1. marion dreyfus on December 23, 2017 3:43 am

    It is interesting that the film gets such a rousing thumbs up, since it is essentially a filmization of the play at 59 East 59th some months ago. There, the unraveling of the life of Van Gogh was paired with the slow unspooling of painting on large swaths of fabric coming down from the ceiling, across the floor of the stage. and ending at the edge of the stage, in front of the audience. The play was episodic, featured too much static talk from Vincent and somewhat less from his brother and sisterin law, but often in a dry, epistolary way, reading and reciting letters. We felt the play lovely to look at, as the art crawl down the walls and across the stage floor was enough to keep us mesmerized–but the play itself left most people cool. It did not last long on the stage because of this paucity of dramatic interaction. At no point in the play, for instance, did vincent actually even pick up a brush or put it to canvas. Perhaps the film accomplishes more by virtue of its medium being more obile, but it sounds almost as static as the play was. A shame: A wasted opportunity of a fascinating subject.


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