‘Loving Vincent’, encapsulates a nuanced and more sensitive portrait of the artist, who often signed his letters, “your loving Vincent.”
From Vasari’s scurrilous lives of the Artist’s onwards, the affairs and angst of our great creatives have often surpassed their artistic achievements. The $5.5 million production focuses on the last week of Van Gogh’s life; before his death from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Auvres Sur Oise, France (1890).The hypnotic and beguiling painted animation poses the question of: “What if the bullet that killed him had been fired by someone else?” Each of the film’s 65,000 frames is an oil painting on canvas an ersatz homage to Gogh’s impasto style. Created by a team of 125 artists, the production took seven years.
Hugh Welchman co-director, praised the film’s ability to be completely unique in its artistic form: “it looks like something completely different, and that doesn’t happen very often in our media saturated world.” The film melds biographical inquiry with a vivid rendition of the Dutchman’s hyper-coloured canvases. The once immortalized paintings on museum walls are brought to uncanny -life.
Earlier movies have notably attracted less popularity, Including Minnelli’s rumbustious ‘Lust for Life’ (with Kirk Douglas as Van Gogh) and Robert Altman’s more cerebral “Vincent and Theo” (Starring Tim Roth and Paul Rhys as brothers.)
Interestingly, ‘Loving Vincent’ focuses purely on Van Gogh’s life post death. In a letter one week before Van Gogh died he wrote: “we cannot speak other than by our paintings”. The producers and directors have done exactly this, infusing artistic elements into a colourful narrative, delivering psychedelic energy to audiences. The painters of the “wild-animal cage”-the “fauves”-of the salon d’automne and the Flemish and German expressionists salute Van Gogh as the prophet of their ardour, their torments and their exaltation. With hope, audiences can begin to appreciate Van Gogh without the overshadowing of his “mad-man” stereotype.
Watch the exciting trailer below: