Author Topic: The Red Violin (1999)  (Read 1651 times)

Offline Antares

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The Red Violin (1999)
« on: January 15, 2010, 02:35:13 AM »
Le Violon Rouge





Year: 1998
Film Studio: Rhombus Media - Mikado Productions, Red Violin Productions, New Line International
Genre: Drama, Music
Length: 131 Min.

Director
François Girard (1963)

Writing
Don McKellar (1963)...Written By
François Girard (1963)...Written By

Producer
Niv Fichman
Daniel Iron
Giannandrea Pecorelli
Barbara Shrier

Cinematographer
Alain Dostie (1943)

Music
John Corigliano (1938)...Composer

Stars
Carlo Cecchi (1939) as Nicolo Bussotti (Cremona)
Irene Grazioli as Anna Bussotti (Cremona)
Anita Laurenzi as Cesca (Cremona)
Tommaso Puntelli as Apprentice (Cremona)
Samuele Amighetti as Boy (Cremona)
Jean-Luc Bideau (1940) as Georges Poussin (Vienna)
Aldo Brugnini as Assistant (Cremona)
Christoph Koncz as Kaspar Weiss (Vienna)

Review
         In a small Italian village sometime in the sixteenth century, a violin-maker and his young beautiful wife are expecting their first child. As all Italian fathers do, he is expecting that his dutiful wife will bear him a son, and that this child will become a virtuoso playing a special violin that he has crafted just for him. The violin that he has created is completely perfect in pitch and tone and will become a rare gem in the world of musical instruments. His wife understands the husband’s devotion to his craft and she worries over the future of the child that she is about to bear for him. To alleviate her concerns she consults a fortuneteller who forecasts her child’s future by using a deck of tarot cards. As the medium turns the first card, the scene shifts to the wife’s bedside as she is giving birth. The husband rushes home from his workshop and when he arrives is saddened to learn that not only has the child not survived, but also his wife has died during labor.

       The story now jumps forward to modern day Montreal, where the violin is about to be sold at auction. We are introduced to an appraiser (Samuel L. Jackson) at the auction house who has been commissioned to authenticate the legitimacy of the instrument. After a few minutes of setting this alternate premise, the story shifts back to the fortuneteller who turns the second card and as we will come to learn, the fortune she casts is not the child’s, but that of the violin. Each of the successive cards that are revealed introduces us to a new owner of the violin as the centuries pass by. The film seesaws its way back and forth between these small vignettes and the activity at the auction house, as we are also introduced to modern day characters that are tied to the past owners, and are now bidding against each other. In the end, the violin will travel in an interesting direction that will embody the turbulent nature of its past.

       In this brief synopsis, the theme and direction of this film can appear to be a hodgepodge of entangling story lines. In actuality, the plot weaves its way through the different tales with the ease of a solo performer playing a meandering violin sonata. Each of the vignettes is interesting on its own, and when tied into the main theme of the screenplay, creates a visual symphony that captivates the viewer in all its twists and turns. If you are one of those people who can predict the direction and conclusion of a film in the first twenty minutes, I think you will be pleasantly surprised to find that this screenplay is not easy to decipher and in the end will satisfy you with its outcome. The Red Violin is the most underrated film of 1999 and is deserving of an audience by film lover’s who appreciates the symmetry of a superlative screenplay and admirable acting.


Ratings Criterion
5 Stars - The pinnacle of film perfection and excellence.
4 ½ Stars - Not quite an immortal film, yet a masterpiece in its own right.
4 Stars - Historically important film, considered a classic.
3 ½ Stars - An entertaining film that’s fun or engaging to watch.
3 Stars – A good film that’s worth a Netflix venture.
2 ½ Stars - Borderline viewable.
2 Stars – A bad film that may have a moment of interest.
1 ½ Stars – Insipid, trite and sophomoric, and that's its good points.
1 Star – A film so vacuous, it will suck 2 hours from the remainder of your life.
½ Star - A gangrenous and festering pustule in the chronicles of celluloid.


« Last Edit: November 04, 2010, 06:33:30 PM by Antares »

Najemikon

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Re: The Red Violin (1999)
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2010, 02:58:32 AM »
Sounds fascinating. Thanks for the review, Antares. Definitely another for the wish list! :thumbup:

Offline Antares

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Re: The Red Violin (1999)
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2010, 03:05:21 AM »
You will definitely like this film. It's right up your alley.

snowcat

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Re: The Red Violin (1999)
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2010, 08:57:51 AM »
This sounds pretty interesting, I may have to check it out! thanks Antares