• Tue. Jun 25th, 2024

Loving Vincent is directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, and stars Douglas Booth, Jerome Flynn, Saoirse Ronan, Helen McCrory, Chris O’Dowd, John Sessions, Eleanor Tomlinson, and Aidan Turner.

Loving Vincent is set in 19th century Europe, in the year following the death of artist Vincent Van Gogh. Postman Roulin, a friend of Van Gogh in his life, requests that his son Armand deliver a letter to Vincent’s brother, in the village where Vincent was found dead. Reluctantly, he heads to the village, where he quickly finds himself getting caught up in the mysteries involving Vincent’s death, and the varied perspectives of the townspeople, all of whom have their own stories to tell.

Loving Vincent is a film that will immediately capture its viewer with the unique art style of hand-painted animation, done in the style of Van Gogh’s artwork; there have been many unique animated films before over the years, but this one sets and new and interesting standard unlike anything that has come before. And while the narrative does get a bit overblown and convoluted at time, the experience is a solid one overall.

 

 

Over a hundred artists worked on the film’s individual frames, of which the movie has over 60,000. The decision to opt for classically-trained painters over traditional animators works in the film’s favor; every frame is quite literally a work of art. The film also uses a simple yet effective technique to differentiate between the present and flashbacks, by having flashback footage in black and white.

The main narrative of Loving Vincent revolves around Armand going around the village in which Vincent passed away, talking to those that knew and encountered him, getting their varied stories, which often differ substantially. This gives the film an element of Citizen Kane and Rashomon, although it never quite manages to reach the level of storytelling reached by those cinematic classics. That said, it does put an interesting spin on what could have been a generic “Point A to Point B” investigation. Even Armand, initially indifferent to Vincent’s plight, quickly finds himself caught up in the mysterious circumstances at hand, which keeps us an audience interested. The film, admittedly, has a few too many secondary/tertiary characters so the investigations/storytelling gets a little out of hand and overblown at times, but fortunately it never quite derails the experience.

Minor narrative issues aside, Loving Vincent will win audiences over with its tale of a legendary artist’s final days and the aftermath, but it is the art style that is truly the star of the show here. This film is a sight to behold, and definitely worth your time.

Rating: Three out of four stars.

 

 

DISCLAIMER: All images in this review are the property of the respective copyright holders. For promotional use only. All rights reserved.

By Taylor T Carlson

Taylor T Carlson Assistant Editor/Senior Staff Writer Taylor T. Carlson was born August 17, 1984, and has called the Vegas Valley home his entire life. A die-hard fan of classic rock and metal music, Taylor has been writing album and concert reviews since he was 16 years old, and continues to do so, having done well over 1,000 reviews. He is also a fan of video gaming and cinema, and has reviewed a number of games and films as well, old and new alike. His thorough and honest (some would say brutally honest) reviewing style has won him the respect of hundreds of music fans and musicians alike, both local and abroad, and the ire of just as many others. Despite being one of the youngest attendees at classic hard rock/metal shows around Vegas, he is also one of the most knowledgeable, having gained the unofficial nickname of “The Eddie Trunk of Las Vegas.” In addition to reviews, Taylor has written and self-published three books on classic hard rock bands, and is a regular participant in rock and roll trivia contests. Taylor also holds a masters degree in special education from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), and has appeared on the hit History Channel television series Pawn Stars. His dream is to be able to one day make a living from writing music books and reviews.

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