Loving Vincent

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Loving Vincent
Loving Vincent.png
Theatrical release poster
Directed by
Produced by
Written by
Starring
Music byClint Mansell
CinematographyTristan Oliver
Edited by
Production
company
  • BreakThru Productions
  • Trademark Films
Distributed by
Release date
  • 12 June 2017 (2017-06-12) (Annecy)[2]
  • 22 September 2017 (2017-09-22) (United States)[1]
  • 6 October 2017 (2017-10-06) (Poland)[3]
  • 13 October 2017 (2017-10-13) (United Kingdom)
Running time
95 minutes[4]
Country
  • Poland
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$5.5 million[5]
Box office$42.1 million[6]

Loving Vincent is a 2017 experimental animated biographical drama film about the life of painter Vincent van Gogh, and in particular, the circumstances of his death. It is the first fully painted animated feature film.[7] The film, written and directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, is a Polish-UK co-production, funded by the Polish Film Institute, and partially through a Kickstarter campaign.[8]

First conceived as a seven-minute short movie in 2008,[7] Loving Vincent was realized by Dorota Kobiela, a painter herself, after studying the techniques and the artist's story through his letters.[9]

Each of the film's 65,000 frames is an oil painting on canvas, using the same technique as Van Gogh, created by a team of over 100 painters.[10] The film premiered at the 2017 Annecy International Animated Film Festival.[2] It won Best Animated Feature Film Award at the 30th European Film Awards in Berlin and was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 90th Academy Awards.

Plot[edit]

One year after Vincent van Gogh's suicide, postman Joseph Roulin asks his son Armand to deliver Van Gogh's last letter to his brother, Theo. Roulin finds the death suspicious, as merely weeks earlier Van Gogh claimed through letters that his mood was calm and normal. Armand reluctantly agrees and heads for Paris.

Père Tanguy, a Montmartre art supplier, tells Armand that Theo actually died six months after Vincent. He suggests that Armand travel to Auvers-sur-Oise and look for Dr. Paul Gachet, who housed Van Gogh after his release from an asylum, shared his love for art, and attended the funeral. Once there, Armand learns that the doctor is out on business. So he stays at the same inn that Van Gogh did during his time in the area. There he meets the temporary proprietress Adeline Ravoux, who was fond of Van Gogh and who was also surprised by his death. At her suggestion, Armand visits the local boatman, who informs him that Van Gogh kept close company with Dr. Gachet's sheltered daughter, Marguerite. When Armand visits her, Marguerite denies and is angered when Armand implies that Van Gogh's suicidal mood could have resulted from an argument with her father.

Throughout the investigation, Armand begins to suspect a local boy named René Secretan, who reportedly liked to torment Van Gogh, was in possession of a gun, and had often drunkenly waved it around town. Dr. Mazery, who examined Van Gogh, also claims that the shot must have come from a few feet away, ruling out suicide. When Armand implicates René, Marguerite confesses that she was in close, but not romantic, relations with Van Gogh, but she does not believe that René was capable of murder.

Dr. Gachet finally returns and promises to deliver Armand's letter to Theo's widow. He admits there was an argument between them – Van Gogh accused Gachet of being a coward for not pursuing his dreams, to which Gachet angrily accused Van Gogh of deteriorating Theo's health by overly depending on his brother. Gachet posits that this accusation drove Van Gogh to suicide in order to release Theo from the burden. After Armand returns home, Postman Roulin later receives word from Theo's widow, Johanna, thanking Armand for returning the letter. Johanna attaches to her letter to Armand one of van Gogh's letters to her – signed, "Your loving Vincent."

Cast[edit]

Directors Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman at the film's French premiere in Paris, with actor Pierre Niney who provided the voice of Armand Roulin in the French version.

The leading cast is as follows:[11][12][13]

Production[edit]

The filmmakers chose classically trained painters over traditional animators. Welchman said he wanted to avoid animators with "personalised styles" and opted for people who "were very pure oil painters".[14] In total there were 125 painters from over twenty countries, which was more than envisioned and due to a difficulty in obtaining funding, resulting in a shorter schedule for the crew to work within. There were, in total, about 5,000 applicants, many of whom became interested after watching an online "recruitment teaser" for the project.[14]

Van Gogh paintings informed the storyboard for the project, which were modified for the screen. These modifications ranged from simple alterations to re-imaginings incorporating different weather effects or time of day.[14] A total of 65,000 frames were painted, but since artists painted multiple frames from the same shot on a single surface, only 1,000 paintings survived.[14]

The film uses a form of rotoscoping. Production for the film began with a live-action cast filming against a green screen. After filming, editors composited Van Gogh paintings into scene backgrounds, and finally cut the movie together as usual. However, once the actual film was complete, they shot each individual frame onto a blank canvas, and artists painted over each image. The entire process, from the actual filming to completion of the paintings, took four years to finish. Even Welchman himself admitted, "We have definitely without a doubt invented the slowest form of filmmaking ever devised in 120 years."[15]

Reception[edit]

Box office[edit]

The movie is considered a box office success, grossing over an estimated $42.1 million (in USD) worldwide on a budget of $5.5 million, with United States earnings totaling $6.7 million. The film has most notably grossed $3 million in South Korea, $2.1 million in Italy and $10.8 million in China.[16]

Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 84% based on 133 reviews, with an average rating of 7.2/10. The website's critical consensus states: "Loving Vincent's dazzling visual achievements make this Van Gogh biopic well worth seeking out – even if its narrative is far less effectively composed."[17] Metacritic reports a score of 62 out of 100 based on 21 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[18]

A.O. Scott, writing for The New York Times, found the visual aspects of the film to be innovative stating: "the viewer also becomes accustomed to the images, and astonishment at the film's innovative, painstaking technique begins to fade. But its charm never quite wears off, for reasons summed up in the title."[19] Actress Angourie Rice had similar sentiments, writing in an essay that “it was such a fascinating experience to witness the actors’ performances turned into van Gogh style paintings. The great thing about this film is that it also made me question what the merging of artforms meant for art, film and everything in between.”[20]

Giuseppe Sedia of the Krakow Post praised the impressive visual style of the movie. However he added, "In their concern to keep the viewers interested, directors Kobiela and Welchman have built an over-narrated and spirit-dampening movie in which the preponderance of the dialogues hinders the viewers’ immersion into the violent beauty and materiality of Van Gogh’s oeuvre". [21]

Awards and accolades[edit]

The film won the "Most Popular International Feature" award at the 2017 Vancouver International Film Festival.[22] It was nominated in the Hollywood Music in Media Awards 2017[23] for Best Original Score in an Animated Film. It won the Audience Award at the 2017 Annecy International Animated Film Festival[24] and the Golden Goblet for Best Animation Film at the Shanghai International Film Festival.[25] It won the XII Festival de Cine Inédito de Mérida (FCIM) after obtaining the highest score among the projected films and also the highest score obtained in the history of the event.[26] On 9 December 2017, the film won Best Animated Feature Film Award at the 30th European Film Awards in Berlin.[27] The film also received Best Animated Feature nominations at both the Academy Awards and Golden Globes.

Year Ceremony Category Recipient(s) Result Ref.
2017 30th European Film Awards Best Animated Feature Film Loving Vincent Won [28]
Hollywood Music in Media Awards 2017 Best Original Score Clint Mansell Nominated [23]
Florida Film Critics Circle Best Animated Film Loving Vincent Nominated [29][30]
2018 75th Golden Globe Awards Best Animated Feature Film Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman Nominated [31]
St. Louis Film Critics Association Best Animated Feature Nominated [32]
Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association Awards Best Animated Feature Nominated [33]
22nd Satellite Awards Best Animated or Mixed Media Feature Loving Vincent Nominated [34]
Boston Society of Film Critics Best Animated Film 2nd Place [35][36]
23rd Critics' Choice Awards Best Animated Feature Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman Nominated [37]
90th Academy Awards Best Animated Feature Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman and Ivan Mactaggart Nominated
45th Annie Awards Best Animated Feature — Independent Hugh Welchman and Ivan Mactaggart Nominated [38]
Outstanding Achievement for Music in an Animated Feature Production Clint Mansell Nominated
Outstanding Achievement for Writing in an Animated Feature Production Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman and Jacek Dehnel Nominated
71st British Academy Film Awards Best Animated Film Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman and Ivan Mactaggart Nominated [39]
North Texas Film Critics Association Best Animated Film Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman 2nd Place [40]
St. Louis Film Critics Association Best Animated Feature Nominated [32]
Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards Best Animated Film Loving Vincent Nominated [41]
Alliance of Women Film Journalists Best Animated Film Won [42]
Denver Film Critics Society Awards Best Animated Film Nominated [43]
Georgia Film Critics Association Best Animated Film Nominated [44]
Art Directors Guild Production Design in an Animated Feature Matthew Button Nominated [45]
Golden Eagle Award (Russia) Best Foreign Language Film Loving Vincent Won

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "LOVING VINCENT IS RELEASED IN POLAND, CANADA AND VIETNAM". Loving Vincent. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  2. ^ a b Mayorga, Emilio (14 June 2017). "'Loving Vincent' Gets Standing Ovation at Annecy". Variety. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Loving Vincent". Altitude. Retrieved 18 August 2017.
  4. ^ "LOVING VINCENT (12A)". British Board of Film Classification. Retrieved 30 August 2017.
  5. ^ "Van Gogh, a new film and a tantalising question: was Vincent murdered?". The Daily Telegraph. 27 June 2016. Retrieved 3 July 2017.
  6. ^ "Loving Vincent (2017)". The Numbers. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  7. ^ a b Macdonald, Fiona (16 October 2017). "Loving Vincent: The film made entirely of oil paintings". BBC. Retrieved 21 October 2017.
  8. ^ "Watch the Mesmerizing Trailer for a Movie About Van Gogh Fully Animated From Oil Paintings". Slate. 29 February 2016. Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  9. ^ "An interview with 'Loving Vincent' director Dorota Kobiela". The Daily Californian. 2017-09-28. Retrieved 2018-01-17.
  10. ^ "How do you paint 65,000 pictures like Van Gogh?". BBC. 29 October 2016. Retrieved 2 December 2016.
  11. ^ Waring, Olivia (2016) This animated Van Gogh movie rendered entirely in paint looks unbelievably stunning; Metro 87.1M, 23 March 2016. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  12. ^ ‘Loving Vincent’ Starring Vincent van Gogh; Fashion Industry Broadcast FIB, 4 April 2016. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  13. ^ Loving Vincent (2016) Full Cast & Crew; IMDb. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  14. ^ a b c d Vollenbroek, Tunde. "'Loving Vincent': 6 Facts About The First Oil Painted Animated Feature". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  15. ^ ""Loving Vincent" Van Gogh: How the world's first hand-painted film was made". CBS News. 21 October 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  16. ^ Hopewell, John. "'Loving Vincent' Passes $20 Million at Worldwide Box Office". Variety. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  17. ^ "Loving Vincent (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  18. ^ "Loving Vincent Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  19. ^ A.O. Scott. Film Review. The New York Times. 21 September 2017.
  20. ^ https://thoughtstokeepmesane.wordpress.com/2018/01/20/loving-vincent/
  21. ^ Sedia, Giuseppe (15 October 2017). "Loving Vincent (2017)". Krakow Post. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
  22. ^ "Indian Horse Wins Coveted VIFF Super Channel People's Choice Award" (Press release). Greater Vancouver International Film Festival Society. 13 October 2017. Retrieved 15 October 2017.
  23. ^ a b Pond, Steve (26 October 2017). "Hollywood Music in Media Awards Announces Nominees in Film, TV, & Video Game Music". Shoot Online. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  24. ^ Annecy Audience Award 2017
  25. ^ Winners Of 20th Golden Goblet Awards
  26. ^ http://www.20minutos.es/noticia/3197262/0/loving-vincent-gana-xii-festival-cine-inedito-merida-con-mayor-puntuacion-historia-certamen/
  27. ^ "THE 30TH EUROPEAN FILM AWARDS: WINNERS". Retrieved 10 December 2017.
  28. ^ "European Film Awards Nominations: 'The Square', 'Loveless', 'On Body And Soul' & More". Deadline.
  29. ^ "'The Shape of Water' Leads 2017 Florida Film Critics Awards Nominations". Florida Film Critics Awards. 23 December 2017. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  30. ^ "'Dunkirk' Wins Top Prizes in 2017 Florida Film Critics Awards". Florida Film Critics Awards. 23 December 2017. Retrieved 23 December 2017.
  31. ^ "Golden Globes Winners: Complete List". Variety. 7 January 2018. Archived from the original on 8 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  32. ^ a b Amidi, Amid (12 December 2017). "Annual StLFCA Awards". Sf. Louis Film Association. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
  33. ^ Brown, Tracy (7 December 2017). "The 2017 WAFCA Awards". Washington D.C. Film Critics Association. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  34. ^ Pond, Steve (28 November 2017). "'Dunkirk,' 'The Shape of Water' Lead Satellite Award Nominations". TheWrap. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  35. ^ "Boston Society of Film Critics - Current Winners". Boston Society of Film Critics. 10 December 2017. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
  36. ^ "Boston Society of Film Critics - Past Award Winners". Boston Society of Film Critics. 10 December 2017. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
  37. ^ "Critics' Choice Awards: 'The Shape of Water' Leads With 14 Nominations". The Hollywood Reporter. 6 December 2017. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  38. ^ Hipes, Patrick (4 December 2017). "Annie Awards: Disney/Pixar's 'Coco' Tops Nominations". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  39. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (9 January 2018). "'The Shape Of Water' Leads BAFTA Film Awards Nominations – Full List". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  40. ^ Tapley, Kristopher (23 December 2017). "Best of 2017 from the NTFCA". North Texas Film Critics Association. Retrieved 23 December 2017.
  41. ^ Amidi, Amid (14 December 2017). "Phoenix Film Critics Society". 2017 Awards NOMINATIONS. Retrieved 14 December 2017.
  42. ^ "2017 AWFJ EDA Award Nominees". Alliance of Women Film Journalists. 3 January 2018. Archived from the original on 3 January 2018. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
  43. ^ "'Call Me By Your Name' Leads Denver Film Critics Society (DFCS) Nominations". Awards Watch. 9 January 2018. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  44. ^ "2017 Awards". Georgia Film Critics Association. 8 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  45. ^ "Art Directors Guild Awards: 'Dunkirk,' 'Shape of Water,' 'Blade Runner 2049' Among Nominees". The Hollywood Reporter. 9 January 2017. Retrieved 9 January 2017.

External links[edit]