Loving Vincent (2017)
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It's strange for me that so many people here seem to love this film so much.
I find the technique and style very interesting - not the act of shooting live, and then painting over each frame; that's been done before (and perhaps better, in my opinion), even if here it was done by oil painters instead of animation artists and using oil on canvas, which of course meant a lot of work and is a huge achievement by itself. But I don't find the end result of all that work to be that amazing, even when seen on a cinema screen. What I liked more was the composition of the shots based on van Gogh's paintings, a bit similar to "Shirley: Visions of Reality".
That being said, I think this should have been made as a short, like it was originally intended. At a length of one and a half hours, the style of the animation is not enough for me to judge the film only based on that, and I take everything else much more into account - the plot, the acting, the strange casting choices of (generally good) actors with inopportune (and different) accents - and considered as a whole, this is a bad movie for me.
The story is a boring and unengaging neo-noir murder mystery, which in the end obsesses so much about van Gogh's death that I feel the movie missed out on the opportunity to paint a portrait of his life using his own technique and style and the acting is puzzlingly bad (even apart from the accents), mostly due to the very odd body language, as Lumen points out.
I'd recommend having a look at this film, but watching through all of it was quite a dull experience for me as the fascination with the style faded over time and the moments of recognizing scenes copying / alluding to van Gogh's paintings were not enough to make up for all the film's shortcomings.
The animation is wonderful. But for the rest it is a really average detective/docu/film noir. The acting (even if their faces are painted over, it's still acting) is really terrible, with weird and over-the-top body language.
And why the accents?? Scottish or Irish whatever it was, or both, to represent southern France? A Polish imitating the (ugly, I know) Dutch accent? Why? Was it that hard to find French and Dutch actors? And the music was a bit too cheesy, no?
Still a feast for the eye, and compliments to all the painters working on this project!
Loving Vincent uses animation techniques developed for Waking Life and A Scanner, Darkly to bring Vincent Van Gogh's paintings to life in the most gorgeous way, using his characters and environments in a coherent detective story. It looks beautiful, but is frankly a little dull (I'm surprised I haven't seen some uncharitable soul compare it to watching paint dry), consisting mostly of talking heads as the lead character interviews various people in Vincent's life to elucidate either why he committed suicide or who might have murdered him instead. Despite considerable talent both in the animation department and in the actors involved, the work feels at a remove from its audience, not at all immediate. I do appreciate the underlying metaphor though. It's really about refusing to accept a person's suicide and trying to make sense of something lacking all sense, i.e. clinical depression, suicidal thoughts, and self-nihilism.
to see which of your friends have seen this movie!