Klimt (film)

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Klimt film poster.png
Directed byRaúl Ruiz
Produced byMatthew Justice
Arno Ortmair
Dieter Pochlatko
Andreas Schmid
Written byGilbert Adair
Raúl Ruiz
Herbert Vesely
StarringJohn Malkovich
Veronica Ferres
Stephen Dillane
Saffron Burrows
Sandra Ceccarelli
Nikolai Kinski
Music byJorge Arriagada
CinematographyRicardo Aronovich
Edited byValeria Sarmiento
Release date
  • 28 January 2006 (2006-01-28) (Rotterdam FF)
  • 3 March 2006 (2006-03-03) (Austria)
Running time
131 minutes
United Kingdom

Klimt is a 2006 Austrian art-house biographical film about the life of the Austrian Symbolist painter Gustav Klimt (1862–1918).[1] It was written and directed by Raúl Ruiz, with an English screenplay adaptation by Gilbert Adair. The director of photography was Ricardo Aronovich, and the music was composed by Jorge Arriagada.[2] The title role was played by John Malkovich and the cast included Stephen Dillane. Both a 130-minute-long director's cut and a shortened producer's cut of 96 minutes were shown at the 2006 Berlin Film Festival.[2]


Gustav Klimt's life story unfolds in a series of disjointed sequences in the artist's mind as he lies dying of pneumonia in a Viennese hospital where he is visited by his friend, Egon Schiele (Nikolai Kinski). Themes within the film include Klimt's platonic friendship with Emilie Floege (Veronica Ferres).[3] Much of the film is centred on Klimt's relationship with Lea de Castro (Saffron Burrows), a dancer to whom he is introduced by the film pioneer Georges Méliès.[4]



The film was shown at the 28th Moscow International Film Festival[5] where it was nominated for two awards, winning the Russian Film Clubs Federation Award.[6]

Philip French, in The Observer described the film as calculatedly enigmatic. Cosmo Landesman, in The Sunday Times, described the film as "frigid and silly" being unnecessarily difficult to follow in the style of Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut.[1]

Further reading[edit]

  • Stewart, Janet (2017); "Filming Vienna 1900: The poetics of cinema and the politics of ornament in Raúl Ruiz's Klimt" in Ignacio López-Vicuña, Andreea Marinescu (eds.) Raúl Ruiz's Cinema of Inquiry, Wayne State University Press, pp. 118-144.


  1. ^ a b This means nothing to me Landesman, Cosmo. Sunday Times 3 June 2007
  2. ^ a b "Klimt". British Film Institute. Retrieved 25 June 2011.
  3. ^ "People: Malkovich takes lead role in life of Klimt" The Independent 5 January 2005
  4. ^ Philip French (3 June 2007). "Klimt". London: The Observer. Retrieved 25 June 2011.
  5. ^ "28th Moscow International Film Festival (2006)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  6. ^ https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0417871/awards[unreliable source?]

External links[edit]