A splendidly idiosyncratic and visually compelling Don Giovanni
This shortened version of Mozart's opera is filmed with an imaginative twist. The staging is split with an abstracted Spain watched on a black and white projector screen by the characters who are set in the same landscape but in thirties Hollywood. This excellent conceit is central to the director's interpretation and is stylishly handled.
The singing is generally good but the running time of an hour or so reduces some of the characters to mere cameos. The consistent operatic problem of casting people who can both sing, act, and look the part is in evidence but Hvorostovsky relishes his role[s] and his portrayal of the licentious nobleman is refreshingly un-forced.
Although the special effects are largely excellent the fire present in the final immolation is at times unrealistic and the final cries of Don Giovanni are somewhat feeble for man who is being committed to the very bosom of Hell.
An enjoyable and provocative filming but probably only of interest to those with prior knowledge of the opera.
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