Loving Vincent (2017) Poster

User Reviews

Review this title
183 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
Van Gogh's art comes alive
CynthiaMargaretWebb20 September 2017
This beautiful work has made history in the genre of Animation cinema - a precious gift from devoted film-makers. The story is well known - a matter of history. Vincent painted the portrait of Joseph Roulin, Postmaster of Arles. The film tells us the story of Vincent's life and last months before his death on 29 July, 1890 (aged 37) from a self-inflicted gun-shot wound, via the device of the postmaster's son being sent on a mission to deliver a letter from Vincent to his brother, which has been returned. Vincent and his brother Theo were very close, and Theo supported Vincent with regular gifts of money, and painting canvas and tubes of paint. The postmaster Roulin knew and loved Vincent, because these two loving brothers kept up a very frequent correspondence. These letters have been published elsewhere and make very moving reading. The son of Roulin goes to Paris, and to Auvers-sur-Oise where Vincent had been in care after he had an emotional breakdown, and talks to people who knew him. He is at first unwilling, but becomes interested, then passionate to find out the truth of the man whom he is now starting to fully appreciate. The remarkable aspect of this film is that the entire story, 95 minutes of it, is told in hand-painted oil paintings, done in the style of Vincent's own work. Scenes begin with an image that Vincent himself painted and if viewers are familiar with all his works, they will recognize the people and the places. But now they are moving, they are speaking, they are telling their stories, and their impressions of Vincent, the man. Some were fond of him, some ridiculed him. There are various points of view.

Technically the film "Loving Vincent" is a wonder of animation. One hundred artists in two countries, (Poland and Greece) working in Vincent's own style contributed full colour paintings for "the present" and black and white paintings for "the past" as the story is being told by the people who knew Vincent.

The film is made up of 853 'shots', and each one began with a first frame of a full painting on canvas board. As the animation photography was done in 12 frames per second, the first painting, would then be photographed, then painted over, with each gradual change to certain details or all of it, until the last frame of the shot. (This is in place of the use of animation cels, which could not be applied in this style of work.) At the end of the 'shot' the film-makers were left with an oil-painting on canvas board, of the last frame. So at the end of filming 853 paintings remained, and 200 are being auctioned off, and many have already sold, (as can be seen from the films own website) although at the time of writing the film has not yet premiered in the USA. The size of the works was usually 67cm by 49cm. Bear in mind that for one hour of film, 43,200 paintings were required, and you will begin to see the extraordinary ambition of this project. Additionally 90 design paintings were created in the planning stages during the year before shooting started. The purpose of these was to define the style in which the artists would all re-create Vincent's style of painting and make it move, live and breathe. 65,000 painted frames in oils were made for the whole film. The story moves along briskly and is full of wonderful characters (the people in Vincent's life). The dialogue of the characters is full of expression, as are the faces, and the characters have been created to really "live" for us. This was done by casting well known and excellent actors in the main roles, and filming them in live-action, then using those 'normal' cinematic images for a basis of the key paintings for each 'shot'. As the film went on, I recognized (from other films) certain of the painted faces of the real actors, who are also giving voice to the painted characters on the soundtrack. This type of animation has never been done before, and as it took seven years to make the film, it might never be done again. The ingenious planning of how to actually do it is brilliant and has been a great success.

Vincent, who suffered, from what we now call bi-polar disease, was an intelligent, deeply sensitive man, who had a sad childhood in a strict bourgeouis family, and was something of a misfit. He showed immense natural art talent. This can be seen clearly and unmistakably by looking at his early drawing. Later he used brush techniques that imitated the 'signature marks' in his pen and ink works. He was understood and saw visual texture.

From Paris Vincent went to Provence, and lived in Arles. He begged his friend Gaugin to come and join him. Vincent was over-joyed but after a few months, things went wrong between them, and Vincent seemed to become very distressed. When Gaugin departed, he was inconsolable. After the famous incident of cutting of his own ear in his distress, he went into care of Dr Gachet in Auvers, where he found a kindred spirit in Gachet, who loved art, and recovered. There he did quite a few more strong drawings and paintings. Vincent saw the world in a kind of almost violent motion and most of his works, drawings and paintings show this. It's as if the wind was visible to him in the air itself, not only in the resulting movements of trees, and fields of grain, or the moving sea.

He never sold a painting in his own lifetime, but gave away some, and sent many to his brother Theo who attempted to sell them in his Paris art gallery. And yet now his works hold the record as being the most expensive ever sold – which happened in modern times.
124 out of 130 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Not a One Trick Pony
fletcherc2113 November 2017
Most of the focus will be on its incredibly innovative visuals, the entire film is animated oil paintings. The paintings are all in Van Gogh's style are they are a beautiful backdrop that brings incredible life to the film in a way that no other style possible could.

But there is much more to Loving Vincent than the art, it is a riveting story that dives into who Vincent Van Gogh was as a man and the mystery surrounding his death. It unfolds in the same manner as "Citizen Kane" with the posthumous exploration into a person through talking to the people who knew him. It is engrossing with excellent voice work and incredibly smooth animation and movement.
31 out of 31 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Amazing work of art, telling a melancholic tale
dierregi12 November 2017
This is one-of-a-kind movie and definitely a must for lovers of Van Gogh. I studied art, therefore I was very interested in seeing how they managed to produce new painting using his technique. The result is visually striking. You can actually experience some of Van Gogh's paintings coming to life, which is in itself pretty amazing.

However, a movie must also have a strong script, a good story to go with the visual. The plot is about Armand Roulin, son of Joseph Roulin - two frequent subjects of Van Gogh's portraits. In fact, the whole Roulin family, inclusive of mum Augustine and her other two children were painted several times by Van Gogh, while in Arles.

Joseph was Van Gogh's postman and in the movie he entrusts Armand to deliver his last letter to brother Theo. Vincent and Theo's letters were published at the beginning of the last century, shedding light on their affectionate relationship, but not about Vincent's demise.

Therefore, Armand sets out to investigate Vincent's last days. The tone is somber and melancholic, somehow clashing with the beautiful visuals. Van Gogh comes across as an enigmatic man who could be sweet and full joy one moment and despondent the next - maybe suffering from bi-polar disorder, but we'll never know.

The plot develops a bit slowly in the end we do not know much more of what we knew at the beginning, but for sure we can retain the memory of this fantastic pictorial voyage.
34 out of 35 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
bogdan_jeflea23 November 2017
It's my first review for a movie, and I'll keep it short. The movie is heart warming, exquisitely done and, if you stay for the ending soundtrack, you will be treated to a wonderful song which summarizes the movie through music. His story is dramatic and a very good reminder of how we, as humans, don't know how to appreciate valuable people during their lifetime. This movie will enrich your life.
17 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Two Hearts One Mind
clarkj-565-16133621 October 2017
Absolutely beautiful, a total sensory experience! Over the years I have seen various movies about Vincent and read about his close relationship with his brother Theo. What I found amazing about this movie was the imaginative approach that was taken to unravel his life and work. So many details were revealed that I had no idea of, and put into such interesting context. The choice of actors was brilliant and we see how close they resemble the actual people during the credit roll at the end of the film - also highly imaginative. I love the rich colours, the Cerulean blue and bright yellows. Truly a starry night! Don't miss.
38 out of 42 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
A work of art , a masterpiece
varko-7588718 October 2017
This is a unique movie and it is not just a movie. It is a whole new experience ! simply amazing and breathtaking , I almost cried in many parts just by thinking how much work and effort has been put in order to make this film come true. A real masterpiece .A movie suitable for all ages and all types of film lovers. When I came out of the cinema the only word I could think about was "masterpiece" . I have nothing bad to comment about this movie really. Nothing to complain. 10/10
74 out of 89 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
a masterpiece
Kirpianuscus26 January 2018
...in a special sense. who do not be defined by words. because it is a puzzle of emotions. for me, it is more a film or a great experience. it is a precious gift. from Vincent van Gogh , because, in his memory, my father gives to me the name , for the hard and almost crazy work of admirable people to recreate a life, a style, a world, people from portraits and the air of a period. it is one films like a cure. because, at each new view, it is different. a story about the truth. a letter and the son of a good friend. words and researches and ways and few scenes full of magic realism. all does "Loving Vincent" not a film about van Gogh but a film about yourself. and not the applauses or the Oscar are the fair thanks for a huge, hard, impressive, moving, touching, almost irrational work. but only the tears. and the smile. and the return to his paintings. and the rhytm of a life. as part. of yours. it is a real , precious masterpiece. and you do not know/define why. because, maybe, it is the story of the Artist and people around him.and it is enough. for see it. again.
30 out of 34 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
A Visual Feast!
dear_prudence15 November 2017
Every frame of this film is a painting. Think about that! They employed 100 artists to create 65,000+ frames to make this film. I loved the idea that the audience is looking through the eyes of an artist--how an artist might see. If that kind of thing interests you, you should go see this film in the theater. It is stunning.

As for the narrative? Well, now, if you know anything about the history of Van Gogh's life, you know it wasn't terribly happy. There is a lot of drinking and smoking and despair to go around. They employ a plot device involving a letter, and it works. Do not go in thinking there will be thundering revelations about the life of the artist. But it offers some quiet insights about some of the subjects of his paintings, and I really loved this.

If you are familiar with Van Gogh's works and appreciate his aesthetics, you owe it to yourself to go. A totally unique cinematic experience.
42 out of 49 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Real Cinematic Art
Equalizer1617 October 2017
Cinema has always been a gloried artwork and we have much more authentic proof in astounding Loving Vincent.

An animated construction entirely brought to life by oil paintings, is  quintessential proof that cinema has still barely scratched the surface of its reaches. Loving Vincent is landmark event for animation and even biographical storytelling through its majestic vision at the last days of Vincent Van Gogh.

Set a after the death of fabled painter, Armand Roulin (Douglas Booth) is possessed with a letter from Van Gogh to his brother Theo before his death, and begins the journey to deliver it. While on call, Roulin encounters all the people close to Vincent before is death gradually trying to put the pieces of what cause his sudden suicide. From this we are taken back to key moments of Van Gogh's life mesmerizingly displayed through the living oil paintings.

Generated by 65,000 paintings by over a 100 artist, Loving Vincent is living work of art. First shot as a live action depiction then adapted into paintings, the immersive gallery of scenes is a first in new format of animation. Directors: Dorota Kobiela, and Hugh Welchman take Van Gogh's own artistry into his own biography (almost), from Citizen Kane style narrative, assessing and celebrating the life of one of the worlds if not the most famous painter. From this production becomes transporting cinema experience into the world of Van Gogh and an enchanting watch of magnificent painting and animation.

Of course what is the fundamental strength of Loving Vincent is its captivating artwork which for every moment is spectacular, and then you have the real narrative of Van Gogh's last days which on its own is an affectionate journey. Even if you don't not much about the life of Van Gogh this is an enthralling experience.

The monumental presence of the paintings is consistently exceptional with wonderful detail and creation put into it. One of the sensational efforts for the film is its sketch of the real actors, making them instantly recognisable on screen, bringing their performance into the art. Although our eyes are set on visual presence, Clint Mansell's score is also a tear-jerking atmosphere throughout the film, capturing the melancholy as well as joy of Van Gogh.

Loving Vincent is a visual sensation, proving the amazing talent that animation brings to the screen. This is by far one of the most significant films of the year and is must see experience, especially for art students.
36 out of 42 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Absolutely mesmerizing.
Not only was it a completely new experience in film, it was incredibly moving as it was aesthetically wonderful. I don't think I've ever seen such a beautiful sequence of images in film. The story was also quite emotional- all in all, I cried tears of many mixed emotions from the beginning to the end of it. I didn't want it to be over- ever. They say that movies are the images of our dreams, but it's never been truer than it is for Loving Vincent- literally, dreams painted onto the silver screen. Don't miss the opportunity to watch on the big screen while you can.
23 out of 26 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
One of the most visually-striking films ever made
andersminor226 September 2017
I saw the film at the Tellride Film Festival and was blown away. I knew that the film would be gorgeous, but the trailer doesn't do the projected feature justice. The oil paintings are mesmerizing on their own, but combined they create a transfixing animation that is completely unique and never gets tiring. The film is worth seeing, and will be forever remembered, for these visuals by themselves. Its only stumble comes from a script that has difficulty in reaching its conclusion, and the use of formulated black-and-white flashbacks to show Vincent's life leave something to be desired (especially when considering the film's other creative achievements.) Even so, the film is an immense triumph that every human being with eyes will love.
57 out of 72 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
The Movie A Sacrificing Artist Deserves
youssef-abualy24 January 2018
From the very first moments of the movie the way it looked hooked me up instantly. The transition between scenes were masterful in the opening part and Clint Mansell's wonderful score sent shivers down my spine. Loving Vincent tells the story of the artist's death through flashbacks and an unplanned investigation a man found himself doing. The story is maybe not the star of the show, or the reason this movie gets hyped, but that does not make it anything less than brilliant, it is a very well told story, it was very moving and emotional. I literally heard some of the crowd in the theater sobbing by the end of it. I absolutely loved the voice acting. And I don't think I really have to mention how brilliant the animation is, if you just watched the trailer you will know how is this thing because the looks of it can not be described. To me this movie is a late appreciation of Van Gogh and his art that he has not seen in his life, and will forever be one of my all time favorites.
8 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Visualized Sentiment
samkoseoglu25 January 2018
Loving Vincent presents a way to escape from any critique by putting its visual effect forward and creating a mesmerizing compilation with paintings in style. It is filled with feeling, emotion; however, the way it impresses us is not like something called "affective fallacy", it may not remind us anything with its plot, it may not affect us with its story, its pure influence is about the art itself reminding the short story of O. Henry, "The Last Leaf". Art creates impressions making us appreciate, cry, and smile.

Even if I do not want to analyze the movie, some details can be referred to remind us about the movie. With paintings on the cinema screen, without realities of our senses, this movie absolutely feels alive. Characters' movements, reflections, expressions on faces, leaves moving with the effect of wind, every camera movements possible -tracking shot, zooming, panning etc.- are reflected with great paintings in the style of Van Gogh. Their composition is something that the audience can easily get used to, even with a feeling suggesting us it is something more than reality, it is something alive, for instance, the scenes reflecting the stillness of the night or the light and shadow usage. Anyone can appreciate the efforts behind every scene.

One of the most important problems about the movie is the expectation created by the movie from the beginning as it is so fascinating and impressive that the rest cannot follow it up with an average plot. A different directing style may have had the power to measure up to the effect of the movie's visuality, but undoubtedly it is worth seeing at the cinema.
7 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Visually compelling - but otherwise imperfect
philpriestley13 October 2017
This is a must-see film for any Van Gogh fanatic or indeed, anyone who is passionate about art. It is innovative and visually striking, and the loving time and attention that has been devoted to the art is clear and obvious throughout.

The story itself is not to be repeated here and many people know or believe that they know the Van Gogh story (thanks to his numerous letters he is one of the great artists that we can claim to have a deeper insight into).

Where the film struggles is the plot. First of all it's a retelling of a story that many people know. It's clear that the premise was wanting to use the art in a particular way - but actually the story line, the plot, is the secondary consideration.

I question how historically accurate the presentation of this story actually is. I would really like to know how they could reference the tensions that exist between different characters and the presentation of different figures. Are they real or imagined for narrative purpose?

I get the feeling that the writers wanted to express the dichotomy of Van Gogh - the gentle, perceptive, altruistic man, and also the fiery, troubled, confrontational, argumentative soul. So do they project these perceptions upon their characters - or are these positions anchored in truth?

The movement of the film is actually quite slow. I would say that someone who didn't have a specific love of Van Gogh might consider it to be slow and uneventful.

Of course the outcome is inevitable and tragic - so the air of melancholy hangs over the whole presentation. It would have been more of an achievement to actually present the joy that must have been present (at least at times) in the soul of this great genius. This doesn't come across because the film is saturated in sorrow.

The dialogue is basic and doesn't ever challenge the actors - but the presentation is fine, and at times very good (Chris O'Dowd is my outstanding actor in this film).

Bottom line is that this film is saved by the unique presentation - had it been a 'straight forward' film acted in a standard format, it wouldn't have got made, it would be too bland. It would be somewhere between documentary and biography and a little bit dry at that (not for cinema anyway).

As it happens, I'm a huge admirer of Van Gogh and I have taken enough interest in him to watch several documentaries and to read a number of accounts of his life. For me this was well worth the wait - and if you're in the same boat you will enjoy it too. If you're not that interested in Van Gogh as an individual you might not get the same kick out of it. It is definitely for a very particular audience.
78 out of 109 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
It's a visual Treat!
willeasyer31 January 2018
I can't imagine all the hard work it took to make this movie, it took 30000 painting to make it and the result is outstanding and magical. As a huge Van Gogh admirer I couldn't but enjoy this work of art it's very beautiful, very touching and very loyal to his heritage. It explores the complex persona of one of the biggest minds and talents of our history, his close relationship with his brother and the circumstances of his death. An artist who led a hard tormenting life, never been understood and never got the recognition he deserved in his living still his heritage lived on and now he's one of the most respected and admired artists in history and his paintings are highly demanded & sold with hundred millions of dollars after being left out and rejected during his lifetime (life hein). Am glad this movie finally saw the light of day, it's a great starter for the people who want to get familiar with this genius work and life, all in a short amount of time plus having a visual orgasm on the road.
10 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
They were robbed
Sonofamoviegeek3 May 2018
I guess you just can't fight Disney in Hollywood. Did I hear right that the Motion Picture Academy considers Coco to be a better movie than Loving Vincent? I am still scratching my head wondering how a run of the mill kid's film could possibly be better than a true artistic masterpiece. Is it because oil painting is such a primitive technology compared to computer-generated animation? Yes, animating with oils results in slightly jerky animation. Never mind that. Just back and watch how impressionist art becomes a living, moving medium to portray art history. Loving Vincent was a labour of love, not the product of data miners and corporate boardrooms

Too many other reviews on IMDB have repeated the storyline but that's not what Vincent is all about. The storyline is simply a vehicle to move us from one famous Van Gogh to another while revealing a little bit of the history and the people and scenes Vincent painted. That makes the art of Van Gogh accessible as well as allowing us to understand his struggles with madness and poverty. That makes this that rare item, an art film that's entertaining as well.

Even though the story is the least important aspect of Loving Vincent, the screen writing leaves us with a mystery. Perhaps Vincent didn't commit suicide. Perhaps he was shot either deliberately or accidentally by what we would today call the town bully. See Loving Vincent and decide for yourself.
9 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Not just artistic, it's a well conceived and well executed interesting story
goodbeer-230-23953730 October 2017
I normally prefer action movies but went to this with my wife and daughter and really expecting much. I was pleasantly surprised.

1) Beautiful artwork. This should win an award for the artwork alone. Not only is it clever, its well integrated with van Goghs style.

2) The story starts out slow but gets interesting. A who done it leading us deeper and deeper into a mystery. This is not a boring artsy movie, the story stands on it's own.

3) Interesting and sometimes likable characters. The actors and actresses did a nice job. The personality of the characters comes through.

4) Nice closing song.

If you hate art, and hate movies that aren't action packed you probably wont like it. If you like van Goghs work, and are willing to put up with a slower developing who done it, I highly recommend this movie. It's the most creative and visually appealing movie I've seen in years.
11 out of 13 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Watch it for the concept, the music, the artists worldwide and of course starry nights.
pallavisamodia18 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Last week, at the beautiful Getty Center, we had the chance to view a pre-screening of the movie, 'Loving Vincent,' world's first full-feature film made entirely with oil paintings. Loving Vincent revolves around the mysterious death of the artist Vincent Van Gogh who had created around 800 paintings in his lifetime. What could have been much easily created as an animated or live action feature, ended up being a compilation of over 66000 frames of oil paintings, brought to life with camera movements on still life, CG animation, daunting music and of course skills of over 100 artists. The concept of the movie is a good enough reason to watch this movie but as for the movie itself: read the review ahead!

The movie follows the journey of Armand Roulin as he investigates the mysterious death of the artist Van Gogh. The movie retains an air of suspicion and depression throughout. The pace of the storyline is slow as it attempts to combine several theories regarding Van Gogh's death. Yet the village panoramas and aerial shots of Paris add life to the story. As the camera sweeps across the field or up a river as a steam engine pass through the bridge above, one cannot help but notice how beautifully the steam is blending in with the sky.

The dialogues have been largely inspired by the letters that Van Gogh wrote to his brothers but lack speech authenticity from the period. However, the dialogues do exhibit the positions of all the characters thoroughly, especially those of Armand Roulin and if not an instant connection with the character, one does eventually the pain and sorrows of Van Gogh towards his end days.

The death of Van Gogh was a loss to the world of art but the movie 'Loving Vincent' is a big leap in the world of art and fulfilling the void of the amazing artist, and others like him who suffered because they weren't mentally healthy.
18 out of 24 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
mah1115 October 2017
Vincent Van Gogh was one of the world's most controversial painters, both during his life, and after his death... This film is an examination of the death of this famed artist. It questions the cause of his death. Did he really commit suicide? Or was it something else?... The movie asks the questions, but does not give answers, letting the viewer have the final say...

The visual experience is intensely mesmerizing. A team of 100 artists created the 65,000 hand-painted frames in the style of Van Gogh's paintings, giving us a view inside Van Gogh's head, and enabling us to see the world through his eyes...

The memorable film score is by the great composer Clint Mansell. As a perfect companion to the story of suspicion and grief, the score enriches the viewing experience while also succeeding as it's own distinct, artistic composition...

The only stumble I see comes from the script. The plot is a retelling of what we already know. The story-line is limited to the time of Van Gogh's death, and it does not tell us that much about his work or his life...

However, the film is a must-see for Van Gogh fanatics and all art lovers...
16 out of 21 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
weathered faces lined in pain
ferguson-612 October 2017
Greetings again from the darkness. For those skeptics who scoff when filmmaking is described as an art form and labor of love, co- directors Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman invite you to take in their nearly decade-in-the-making project. It's the first fully hand-painted on canvas feature film - experimental filmmaking crafted by more than 100 artists and including an estimated 130 paintings, with 65,000 individual shots/frames.

The spectacular visuals were created by painting over the images … both of actors performing scenes and van Gogh's paintings. By adding to and amending images, even 10 times or more, the scenes come to life with movement and a pulsating psychedelic feel. The familiar colors of his paintings create a level of connection, while black & white images are used for flashbacks and reenactments.

Though we have never seen this look on screen before (this goes beyond Linklater's WAKING LIFE), the stunning visuals are accompanied by what can be described as a detective story or murder/suicide mystery. It picks up in 1891, one year after van Gogh's suspicious death. A local Arles postman holds one last letter from Vincent to his beloved brother Theo. Having held onto it for much too long, he asks his son Armand Roulin to hand-deliver the letter to Theo. Sporting the yellow blazer so recognizable from his portrait, the angry and skeptical Armand heads to Paris. Little does he know, this is only the beginning of his journey … a journey that finds him researching Vincent's life and a journey that helps him discover more about himself.

There have been many movies made focusing on this amazing artist: LUST FOR LIFE (1956), VINCENT (1987), VINCENT & THEO (1990), and VAN GOGH (1991). This one is filled with contrasting and conflicting stories, theories and recollections, and descriptions of events from those who crossed paths with the artist on a daily basis. We listen right along with Armand as he spends time in Avers-sur-Oise … where Vincent lived, painted, and died.

Many of the actors involved are recognizable even in this artistic format: Chris O'Dowd is the postman, Douglas Booth is Armand, John Sessions plays art supplier Pete Tanguy, Eleanor Thompson is the innkeeper's daughter Adaline, Jerome Flynn is the controversial Dr. Gachet, Saoirse Ronan is Gachet's daughter Margarita (recognizable from her piano portrait), Helen McCrory plays the disgruntled Gachet housekeeper, Aidan Turner is the boatman, and Robert Gulaczyk is Vincent. Since these folks were all part of van Gogh's artwork, we are fascinated to see them come to "life".

Vincent van Gogh picked up a brush for the first time at age 28. He was dead at age 37, and left behind approximately 800 paintings of portraits and landscapes – many among the most famous pieces in the world today. Did he try to commit suicide as he claimed or was there a more sinister explanation for his death? Of course the filmmakers only hint at possible answers and can't solve a mystery that is approaching two centuries. Understanding the man is challenging, and perhaps our best hope is through the work he left behind. This is a compelling cinematic experience and we have certainly benefited from the filmmaker's labor of love. Clint Mansell's score leans heavily on strings and piano, and is perfect accompaniment for the story. One could question the closing credits use of Lianne La Havas' version of "Vincent" (renamed "Starry Starry Night") rather than Don McLean's, but one mystery per day is plenty. Spot the paintings, play detective, and mostly enjoy the visuals built on the works of a complex, talented, and tragic figure.
22 out of 31 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Captivating visually; an unsettling account of van Gogh's passing
2001ASOfan5 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
"Loving Vincent" is easily one of the most visually beautiful films I've seen in my decades as an avid film-goer, the hand-painted filmmaking technique turning out to be a perfect and memorable way of illustrating one part of van Gogh's life story. The overall experience is ultimately quite sad and tragic--fitting, of course, for what van Gogh went through in his relatively brief lifetime, and especially during his very brief time painting what turned out to be his masterpieces. This particular view of his life left me wanting to read more on what happened in his final days, curious to know more facts, and also sparked my wanting to revisit his paintings after long years of not having viewed them. It rekindled the feelings I had when I first studied and enjoyed them decades ago. I do recommend the film for anyone interested in van Gogh, or the creative process in general. It is a singular experience, like nothing else I've seen, and the film leaves a lasting impression.
7 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
One selling point... because saying all of them would be impossible.
Maz-hell15 February 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The selling point of this movie was that it was hand made with the paint of over 100 painters. That is because saying how magnificent this movie is is not easy to describe in one sentence.

Differentiating itself from the aberration that is boyhood, it delivers more than the selling point. The photography is extraordinarelly beautiful, being perfectly voiced, with every scene being as breathtaking as the next one. The music actually makes your skin crawl. The sound effects are on point.

The plot is pretty straight forward, ergo nothing new is added: It is the last year of the life of Van Gogh. Not something that I didn't know, it was a retelling of it. A little weak, but considering how the death of him is still a matter of dispute among specialists the ending is just on point, leaving the viewer decide what happened.

One piece I would watch again.
4 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Story of an unfortunate man...
stimpy_tr21 January 2018
As a Van Gogh fan, I was waiting for so long to see this movie. I thought it would be about his life but it came out to be something different. A postman was asking his son, Armand, to deliver the last letter of Van Gogh written to his brother, Theo. As first I thought it was a piece of the ending such as a flashforward and the story would recommence but it didn't. During the movie I discovered how the death of Van Gogh is as exciting as his life. Although I knew how unfortunate his life was, I didn't know the real reason behind his suicide. We were told he was just a crazy artist. I felt utterly sad to learn that he cared much about his brother and vice versa. The movie, at the beginning, comes very strange as it was taken using paintings of his own impressionist style. However the story comes attractive and you find yourself questioning his death. I would like to congratulate all the artists who contributed to this movie. Great piece of art and nice ending song!
4 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
A Masterpiece Of Moving Art
kjproulx17 January 2018
Film critics tend to talk down on a film when it seems like the core idea of the film is a gimmick. Three-dimensional movies were the talk of the town about 10-15 years ago and have now become an annoyance to many. Loving Vincent is the newest film to try something new in terms of how it tells its story. Being completely painted by hand, this movie moves along as if it had been animated about 60 years ago. A more recent comparison would be to say it looks like A Scanner Darkly, but I truly feel this film's much more unique than even that. This is a wonderfully engaging premise and even without that aspect, here's why I believe everyone needs to see this film, even just based on the portraits alone.

Loving Vincent tells the story of Armand, a young man who has been tasked with the devastating venture of delivering Vincent Van Gogh's final letter. Upon arrival of the town that Van Gogh ultimately met his untimely end, Armand finds himself incredibly interested in the mystery surrounding this death. Becoming more of an investigation film than a simple journey, Loving Vincent takes you on a ride that's full of insight and powerful moments between characters. I didn't think I would've been so moved by this movie, but the performances/voiceover work was truly astounding, sucking me right into this beautiful portrait of a film.

It's one thing to commend this film for having truly breathtaking visuals, but that's also the understatement of the year. This movie blows away any animated film from last year in terms of being uniquely made. From the nods to Van Gogh's classic works, to the motion and dissolves between scenes, everything about this film felt seamless. That being said, there's a large obstacle that many viewers will have to get over as soon as the film begins as well, being the fact that it's entirely painted by hand. This wonderful aspect of the movie will definitely be off-putting to some, due to the fact that it's the first film of its kind and may be bizarre to look at. For myself, I found it absolutely fascinating, plain and simple.

As someone who prefers other forms of art than paintings, I do admire a great piece of art, regardless of the medium. This movie explores a life that pretty much everyone has heard of at some point in time, and I must admit, I didn't know this story was as complex of a mystery as this movie suggests it is. From motivational speeches about life and the universe to questions brought up in a philosophical way, I was incredibly immersed in each and every one of the scenes throughout this film. There's hardly any downtime because every line of dialogue progresses this story forward at a rapid rate.

In the end, Loving Vincent may not be for everyone, especially due to its unique look, but the story itself is something I believe everyone needs to see. There is a scene that closes out the movie that I still have playing over and over in my head. As I mentioned many times, this movie is filled with memorable lines of dialogue that truly makes you think about life itself and the universe surrounding us. This may seem biased and this particular reaction will surely not hit everyone the way it hit me, but I found this to be a remarkable picture. I fear this movie will go fairly unnoticed, which is a shame because literally, every aspect of this film is wondrous to behold. This is one of my favorite films of 2017.
4 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
One of a Kind
Hitchcoc17 November 2017
This is an astonishing feat. When animated shorts are nominated for Academy Awards, they frequently run 10 to 15 minutes. How a group of artists were able to "paint" the scenes and incorporate great paintings into a really fine story of full movie length is beyond my comprehension. Van Gogh is dead and so is his brother, Theo. It is thought that he took his own life for whatever reason. Lord knows he had enough issues, including his utter genius. A family friend is dispatched to deliver a last letter from the great artist to his brother, but when the friend arrives, he find Theo is dead. This guy has his own issues and at first tires of his task, but when he finds that there is some suspicious stuff relating to the "suicide," he becomes entrenched in solving the case. A running theme is that Van Gogh had no weight because of his lack of commercial success and, beside that, he was weird. As the friend gets into the case, we get to know that there were people who cared about him and liked him, but they also didn't do much to hold him up. As others have said, this is an amazing expression of the painter''s world, put before us through his paintings. One other thing. Don't leave the theater too soon because there are some great closing items that one shouldn't miss.
4 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews

Recently Viewed