Tuesday, January 03, 2023

Van Gogh

Bound by Wild Desire

Although filmed in b&w, Van Gogh [1948] by Alain Resnais has sent me into another world. One created by Van Gogh and Resnais. AR had to plan every zoom within the context of the eventual pre-envisioned montage. And the musical score is stupendous. Today’s soundtrack would be crap.

In black-and-white there’s a purity to Van Gogh’s paintings that otherwise might be ‘overshadowed’ by the colors. It resets the attention to the brushstrokes.

Resnais's screenwriter on Van Gogh: “Nature slapped him in the face.”

Van Gogh, who didn’t have a pot to piss in, made outrageously sublime paintings. There’s no difference between his ragged care for a wheat-field and the individual bricks of a structure he turned his eye to. His eyes, his eyes…

Resnais’s VAN GOGH is also a radical work — it consists entirely, solely, of details from his paintings. As it should.

Pierre Braunberger was a saint.


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