Set in Paris in 1919, biopic centers on the life of late Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani, focusing on his last days as well as his rivalry with Pablo Picasso. Modigliani, a Jew, has fallen in love with Jeanne, a young and beautiful Catholic girl. The couple has an illegitimate child, and Jeanne's bigoted parents send the baby to a faraway convent to be raised by nuns. Modigliani is distraught and needs money to rescue and raise his child. The answer arrives in the shape of Paris' annual art competition. Prize money and a guaranteed career await the winner. Neither Modigliani, nor his dearest friend and rival Picasso have ever entered the competition, believing that it is beneath true artists like themselves. But push comes to shove with the welfare of his child on the line, and Modigliani signs up for the competition in a drunken and drug-induced tirade. Picasso follows suit and all of Paris is aflutter with excitement at who will win. With the balance of his relationship with Jeanne... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
The story of Modigliani is well-known. However, this film gives it life with a wonderful script, amazing cinematography, and mind-blowing performances by Andy Garcia and Elsa Zylberstein, a little-known French actress. I was glued to the screen from start to finish and have recommended it to everyone. If this film, Garcia, and Zylberstein don't receive Academy Award nominations, there's something wrong with Hollywood... at least more than is already wrong with it.
Run don't walk to the nearest theatre showing "Modigiliani". Forget the mega-publicized studio films being released now (Winter 2004-2005). See it while you can. It's a true find, and one that will stay with you long after you left the theatre.
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