J'accuse is an 'essay-istic' documentary in which Greenaway's fierce criticism of today's visual illiteracy is argued by means of a forensic search of Rembrandt's Nightwatch. Greenaway ... See full summary »
Tired of her husband's philanderous ways, the mother of two daughters drowns her husband. With the reluctant help of the local coroner, the murder is obscured. Her daughters are having ... See full summary »
An American architect arrives in Italy, supervising an exhibition for a French architect, Boullée, who is famous for his oval structures. Through the course of 9 months he becomes obsessed ... See full summary »
An exiled magician finds an opportunity for revenge against his enemies muted when his daughter and the son of his chief enemy fall in love in this uniquely structured retelling of the 'The... See full summary »
The first of three parts, we follow Tulse Luper in three distinct episodes: as a child during the first World War, as an explorer in Mormon Utah, and as a writer in Belgium during the rise ... See full summary »
Raymond J. Barry,
A revisionist biopic on Charles Darwin, illustrated via 18 tableaux covering details from Darwin's birth, his defining voyage on the HMS Beagle, the publication of his seminal Theory of ... See full summary »
Barbara M. Messner,
This is a TV adaptation of a 1993 opera entitled "Rosa," with a libretto by Greenaway and score by Louis Andriessen. "Rosa" is the first in a projected series of 10 operas, each dealing ... See full summary »
Miranda van Kralingen,
From Moscow to Mexico City, Eisenstein was privileged enough to met the cultural heroes of the era and embrace them as compatriots, with a handshake. Such was his reputation as the ... See full summary »
In the early 1990s Peter Greenaway was a cult figure for cinephiles in Russia. I remember Prospero's Books changing my perception of what cinema can be. It was a treat so visually rich that at first I had a problem to digest it. Then The Cook, the Thief... and The Baby of Mâcon came as an attack I had been prepared for. It was an utterly enjoyable experience though to get emotionally involved was quite difficult. Then there was a decade of various experiments for the director that took him to the places, times, and forms that did not always manage to get me through the lengthy hours of his films.
Goltzius and the Pelican Company has turned out to be a well balanced work. We can enjoy here the major features of the Greenawayness, such as constant visual and audio aggression breaking all taboos, yet matched with equal dose of grace, satire and self-irony. Using the fine art works related to the film themes contributes, as usual, considerable impact to the picture. It makes us feel the legacy of the Western classical tradition integrally interwoven into the film. And apart from the formal aesthetic achievements, which are kind of standard for most of Greenaway's works, in Goltzius and the Pelican Company there is a certain emotional rhythmic structure reaching its top with an amazing Dance of Salome scene.
So I have found it not merely a formal exercise in cinema language as the recent master's films often tend to be, but also an emotionally involving (at least as much as you could expect from a Greenaway) coherent story.
Still I think it may not work for an audience completely unacquainted with the author's works, so I recommend to watch a trailer before buying a ticket.
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