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In 1914, Wilhelm Uhde, a famous German art collector, rents an apartment in the town of Senlis, forty kilometers away from Paris, in order to write and to take a rest from the hectic life he has been living in the capital. The cleaning lady is a rather rough-and-ready forty-year-old woman who is the laughing stock of others. One day, Wilhelm who has been invited by his landlady, notices a small painting lying about in her living room. He is stunned to learn that the artist is no other than Séraphine. Written by
Beautiful cinematography and good acting don't equal a great film
I enjoy French films very much and saw Seraphine in Paris. While the movie looks beautiful and the acting is excellent, overall the film bored me. There wasn't enough dramatic tension or intense character development to sustain my interest. I was very surprised that it won so many awards, but then again if the French academy is similar to the one in the U.S., they tend to play it safe. Seraphine is worth seeing if you are interested in thinking about the artistic soul. But there is nothing groundbreaking here. I would have liked to see a version of this artist's life that was less academic and more thought provoking. The one thing I admired very much was the performance of the lead actress. I was trying to imagine anyone equivalent to her in the U.S. and was unable to conjure any names. She is not classically beautiful, yet clearly she is an actress of great stature in France to have won this role. The lesson I took away from the film was the appreciation of talent, both of Seraphine and the actress who portrayed her.
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