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Altman (2014)

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A look at the life and work of American filmmaker Robert Altman.

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A look at the life and work of American filmmaker Robert Altman.

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16 October 2014 (Italy)  »

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User Reviews

 
Picture of an auteur
28 September 2014 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

Altman's life merits a 10-hour documentary. This is only 1½ hours, but we are treated to a decent selection of Altman trivia.

Gosford Park, M.A.S.H., Nashville, Short Cuts, The Player. Just wow.

The downside of cutting it down to a feature length documentary is that you are forced to skim through many great films. First of all, he made so many movies it's hard to keep track of them. Second of all, his movies are so dense that they require multiple viewings, and more than two minutes of exposition, to fully appreciate.

Nonetheless, I think the film is well-made and never boring.

Family videos and photos, and on-location footage, provide access to a rarely-seen Altman, such as Altman-the-father.

But don't expect great revelations. There is nothing truly shocking here, no skeletons in the closet. Altman is painted as a suspiciously lovable, but subversive, Santa Claus figure. Perhaps that's just the way he was.

But one would have liked a few rough edges to be explored a bit more - like his family troubles, financial worries and personal addictions to gambling and booze. The movies gets too close to hagiography at times. But if one is to pick Saints for canonization, you could do much worse than go with Robert Altman!


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