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I can only imagine how pleased Van Gogh would be at seeing his work
articulated through Paul Cox's lens. Interspersed with countless images
of Van Gogh's original work, are cinematic images of the landscapes,
the still-lifes, the town, and the people that Van Gogh knew so well.
Cox unassumingly uses real people and costumes in an almost dream-like
fashion; they exist along the edges of the film, in a sort of blur; as
if we were living directly in Van Gogh's dreams and memories. What's
most astounding though, is that I never knew what an incredibly gifted
writer Van Gogh was. The entire film is narration of Van Gogh's words,
in letters written to his brother. His passion, idealism, and
frustration are articulated in ways that are so tangible
it makes all
other works about frustrated idealists seem downright silly. It took me
a while to warm up to John Hurt's narration because I kept envisioning
him instead of Van Gogh, but after a little while I got lost in the
words just and concentrated on the feeling that Hurt was evoking. By
the end I was in tears. It's the best film about an artist that I've
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