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|Index||30 reviews in total|
37 out of 40 people found the following review useful:
beauty in the age of cynicism, 3 May 2006
It has been a long time since I have seen a movie with as much
integrity and honesty. As the writer so aptly states in the opening of
the movie: this is a movie for romantics not critics.
When I hear someone trash a film or is angry about something the first question I ask is "what are they afraid of?". It IS easy to be cavalier and self serving. It is much more difficult to truly speak from the heart.
The characters are real...the performances excellent. The script is brilliant. There are so many gems...words of wisdom that it is hard to remember them all.
What I like most about this movie is that it is completely unapologetic. It takes courage to let it all hang out.
Perhaps if our culture was more in tune with nature and less about cynicism and ego we would all be better off.
I would highly recommend this movie to everyone.
31 out of 34 people found the following review useful:
A masterpiece, 4 May 2006
Author: larry-411 from United States
I attended the World Premiere of Local Color Saturday night at the
Tribeca Film Festival, and I was filled with a sense of peace and
warmth as I left the theater. This really is a "feel good" film.
Nicoli Seroff is an aging, jaded former Russian painter. His would-be protégé is John Talia Jr., a young artist with the headlong enthusiasm of youth. Writer/director George Gallo's tale is is nothing short of a beautiful work of art, much like those which populate the film.
Ray Liotta: As John Sr., the always dependable Liotta shines in this role as the macho "man's man" to his son's budding art ambitions. The interactions between the two are painful if not comical. Even today (the film is set in 1974) how many fathers would lovingly encourage their teenage sons to be painters? Not unless the walls need to be redone, of course. But in a role that could have easily been stereotypical, Liotta adds nuance and texture to his performance with which a less experienced actor would have struggled.
Samantha Mathis: Perhaps Seroff's final muse as he heads into his last days, Mathis' Carla is full of life yet strains under the weight of pain only she understands. Now Talia enters their lives who will best soothe her in her quiet anguish, or more appropriately, which artist will most find comfort in her presence? Will she be the fulcrum who balances Nicoli and John? Or will she tear them apart? Mathis takes on this enigmatic role with steady, understated strength and is simply angelic.
Ron Perlman: This veteran character actor may be one of our most underrated performers of the last 25 years. That he was chosen for the role of Curtis Sunday is a stroke of casting brilliance. Sometimes Seroff's lone supporter, sometimes his fiercest nemesis, Sunday provides the film's comic relief as a self-professed modernist who claims to be at the cutting edge of art while thumbing his stuck up nose at tradition. Effete and obnoxious, Perlman's Sunday manages to elicit some empathy in the face of the stubborn, equally opinionated Seroff. I cried with laughter at what may be one of the finest scenes in any film this year. You'll know it when you see it. Perlman is superb.
Armin Mueller-Stahl: I'm not one for hyperbole, but I truly believe Mueller-Stahl would be astounding in any role he chooses. In this case, as mentor to the young Talia, he is truly being himself a legendary artist who has been there, done that. In this case, though, he is the reluctant teacher to Trevor Morgan's John. His is the face of wisdom drawn from a lifetime of determination, success, and failure. His is the mind of one who simply wants to live out his last days in a bottle of vodka. And it is left to John Talia to break that bottle, or at least to see Seroff through the glass, and vice-versa. Such is the stuff of great film, and here the brilliant direction of George Gallo is evident he doesn't "direct" as much as he lets go. Mueller-Stahl inhabits this character like hand in glove, at times heartbreaking, at others raucous with laughter, his Seroff is the teacher we all dream of or is he? Will John be up to the task of coaxing the long dormant talents of the Russian painter to wake up just long enough to inspire the young man to pursue his dreams? Mueller-Stahl is a delight, and deserves great notice for his performance as Nicoli Seroff.
Trevor Morgan: The impact of this film rests largely on the shoulders of Morgan's performance as the young John Talia Jr., whose story is based on the writer's own experiences as a young struggling artist in an art world that is quite unfriendly to contrarians. To play the protagonist in a film which is set in a world somewhat foreign to most is daunting in itself. Morgan not only succeeds but wins the hearts of the audience from the moment he appears on screen. The camera loves him, and in a role that requires as much to be said in a look or a gesture as words on a page, Morgan is an inspired choice. His are the eyes of youth, of sadness and hope, of loneliness and desire, and this is the stuff of which great performances are made. We believe Morgan is John, but more importantly, John is everyboy. This isn't just a tale of a youth yearning for acceptance in an art world in which his chosen genre is passé. After all, what teen hasn't sought approval, somewhere, sometime, in any setting? We all identify with John because we all were John. Who will listen to me? Will my dad support my hopes and desires? Will I find anyone to help me achieve my goals and dreams? This is classic material, and Morgan's performance is gut wrenching and joyful all at once. I was on the verge of tears for so long that when they finally did flow it was cathartic. That Morgan is still a teenager himself on whose performance this film succeeds or fails bodes well for this young man's career. He is frighteningly endearing, and one is left with a sense of wonder at what he has accomplished here. Expect great things from Trevor Morgan.
Visually and aurally stunning, the sweeping landscapes of the Pennsylvania woodlands (portrayed excellently by Louisiana) are photographed in loving detail by Michael Negrin, and the score by Chris Boardman is simply breathtaking. This is one soundtrack you'll want to own. The music tugs at your heart without being heavy-handed, which might have been the case in lesser talented hands.
Local Color is a masterful work of art, much like the subject of its story, and the artist George Gallo deserves nothing less than the boundless appreciation of the theater-going public. I certainly give him that.
26 out of 28 people found the following review useful:
Big Yes!, 7 May 2006
Author: JLurieDesign from United States
These days we have movies that hurl us into outer space, throw us into life threatening situations laden with violence and hysteria, or filled with so many amazing special effects that one cannot tell what is real and what is not. George Gallo's newest film, LOCAL COLOR offers none of the above. Not that I don't love the Wachowski Brothers or enjoy peaking into the twisted, creative mind of Quentin Tarantino. I do. But for countless reasons having to do with the state of the world today, I think that most of us long for this kind of "entertainment". The kind that serves to connect us to our humanity and give us hope. I love this movie. The acting is stellar, the story is compelling and inspiring. The cinematography is nothing short of spectacular. I was able to see the world through a true artists eye. It made me understand the level of passion and tenaciousness it takes to reach that level. Some might say that the film is too sentimental, others might say it is self-indulgent or egocentric, but I disagree. I feel that the tale was told with hat in hand that it will serve to inspire anyone who is open to the message it delivers. It is a movie about achievement attained by following one's passion, not by selling ones soul.
25 out of 28 people found the following review useful:
most moving film I've seen, 9 May 2006
Author: pipoon from United States
I worked in post on Local Color. I took the job at a greatly reduced fee. I must have cried 10 times watching the rough cut with no music. Afterwards, I felt like telling the producers I would work for free on this one, but, alas, I couldn't afford to do so. This is one of the most moving films I have every seen. Tears of joy come to me every time I even think about or tell some one of this film (and as I write). I am a musician and artist. The ideas of this film resonate so deeply within me that I felt that I could have written it myself. I was told that Armin, after much urging, came out of retirement to do this. Having read the script he said "This is what I've always wanted to say". As for those who posted so negatively on this film, remember, right at the beginning of the film - "You are warned, this is not a story for cynics". Yes, it is sentimental, but the film defends that too. Sentiment and art are what make us human.
23 out of 25 people found the following review useful:
Best film of the year!, 30 April 2006
Author: ramunlim from United States
Best film of the year in my opinion. I hope it gets wide distribution since it is being offered by a small independent producer with excellent credentials, George Gallo. Mr Gallo previously wrote "Wise Guys", "Midnight Run" and his best previous effort "29th Street". This is his best yet. Local Color is a sensitive film with outstanding art, color, and photography. Actor Armin Mueller-Stahl is especially good in his role. The premise of the film is that a young artist wants an "old master" to give him lessons and the old man is not a "touchy-feely" kind of teacher. Plot turns are unexpected and the ending is especially well done (many other options could have been used).
19 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
A movie that stays with you., 15 May 2006
Author: hollyinthewoods from United States
Most of the time when I see a film, I instantly forget about it the
minute I walk out the theater door. This movie is different. It's been
three weeks now since I've seen "Local Color" and I can't stop thinking
about it. There are scenes so poignant that I can still hear the
dialogue echoing in my head. There's a scene in particular early on in
the film when the old painter looks up to the sky and asks his young
protégé, "What color are the clouds? You think that they're white, but
look again". Since seeing this film, I too find myself looking around
me, analyzing the color and beautiful nuances of life. This film has
honestly changed the way I look at things.
Furthermore, this film is very funny. The humor is very human and it takes you by surprise. I laughed out loud a lot. I love this film.
19 out of 22 people found the following review useful:
Every Frame is a Painting..., 4 May 2006
Author: nathan-339 from United States
I have now seen this movie 5 times and I will bet that I will see it
five more. This movie for me was a validation of a life time of
conviction about the state of modern art and how it has consistently
suppressed the simple idea that nature and beauty still do matter.
I have gone to art school and I have seen how modern art schools can be so destructive in the nurturing of classically minded artists. And at the end of the day we wonder where the hell is art going.
For me this movie rekindled my love and passion for painting and ultimately reminded me of all those wonderful teachers who selflessly gave and encouraged me not to stop my journey. There is so much in John Talia's character that I related to, and I am sure a great deal more to Armin's.
Every frame in the movie for me looked like it was composed by an artist, only later to find out that it was. Anyone who admires the art of the great American Pennsylvania and dutch movement, will take away so much from this movie. You can see the influence of Andrew Wyeth and the Brandywine school on the director.
George Gallo is as masterful a story teller as he is an artist. His attention to composition of every frame and his sincere dialogue and very real character development, make this a guy to watch. I can't wait until his next picture.
I was very moved by the entire experience.
This movie gets five stars and 2 thumbs up from me.
16 out of 18 people found the following review useful:
Movie Distributors need to pull their you know what's out of you know what. Go See this film., 18 October 2007
Author: accessisyours from United States
A must see film for people who love good true stories about following
ones passions, Too bad that big studios are only about big $ and think
that the public does not want to see good movies that don't have the
shoot um up, kill, action. I believe people do want to watch movies
that inspire people to follow their dreams. As a film maker myself I
thank George and his Wife for not giving up. If you are lucky enough to
have this film come to your town go see it and tell your friends to see
it. Note The big studios said that no one wanted to see My Big Fat
Greek Wedding, who was wrong about that. Not the public.
Hang in there George.
16 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
a wonderful alternative, 15 May 2006
Author: jean_luc_turbo from Los Angeles, CA U.S.A.
I saw a rough cut of this film a while back and was deeply moved by its
simple beauty and meditative pace.
The performances have so much depth and take the diverse characters to a level that must have moved even the writer/director and producers.
It is also surprisingly funny, well not surprisingly, but when you read terms like "deeply moved" or "meditatve pace" you might *surprisingly* find yourself laughing out loud...a lot...
This is a feel good movie without being forced to feel good...it is an unfolding story with the heart and soul of the writer/director, producers, crew and cast made available to us, the audience, to take, relate and in our own way, give back...
11 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
Nostalgia, Melancholy and Passion, 9 August 2008
Author: Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
In 1974, in the suburb of Port Chester, New York, the teenager aspirant
artist John Talia (Trevor Morgan) has a troubled relationship with his
homophobic father (Ray Liotta) that does not understand his talent.
While visiting his friend Yammi (Charles Durning), John finds that the
genius Russian painter Nicoli Seroff (Armin Mueller-Stahl) lives nearby
and he decides to pay a visit to his idol. John finds a bitter
alcoholic elder that still grieves the loss of his wife Anya many years
ago but he successfully befriends the master. When Nicoli travels to
the countryside in Pennsylvania, he invites John to go with him to
teach him how to paint. Then John meets Nicoli's neighbor Carla
(Samantha Mathis) who grieves that loss of her son, and the arrogant
critic of art and Nicolai's friend Curtis Sunday (Ron Perlman). Along
their vacation, the synergy of Nicoli and John improves their
"Local Color" is a nostalgic and melancholic movie about life and passion for arts. The story is based on true events and is beautifully disclosed through the magnificent performance of the fantastic Armin Mueller-Stahl, very well supported by Trevor Morgan. The gorgeous Samantha Mathis has also a minor but important participation and she does not appear her stated age (36); therefore she fits perfectly to the role of Carla. The movie plays with emotions, oscillating between few bitterly funny moments (like for example when Nicoli shows the paintings of the children with mental retardation to his arrogant friend or his behavior in the art exposition in the countryside) and many heartbreaking moments. The message to follow the dreams is nice; the cinematography is beautiful; the pace is adequate and my only remark is to the pronunciation (or accent) of the narrator in long texts, which is difficult to be followed. My vote is seven.
Title (Brazil): "O Mestre da Vida" ("The Master of the Life")
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