Klimt

Overview

Ra?l Ruiz's Klimt uses an amorphous, nonchronological narrative to cinematize events from the life of one of the 20th century's most profound artists: the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt here portrayed by John Malkovich. Ruiz begins with Klimt's painful death from syphilis, and spends the remainder of the film transitioning, loosely and freely, between episodes that befell the painter. The film pays particularly strong attention to the artist's proclivity for scandalizing the European upper crust with overtly ...
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Overview

Raúl Ruiz's Klimt uses an amorphous, nonchronological narrative to cinematize events from the life of one of the 20th century's most profound artists: the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt here portrayed by John Malkovich. Ruiz begins with Klimt's painful death from syphilis, and spends the remainder of the film transitioning, loosely and freely, between episodes that befell the painter. The film pays particularly strong attention to the artist's proclivity for scandalizing the European upper crust with overtly erotic subject matter and presentation, and his many affairs -- notably a lengthy one with his perpetual inspiration, Lea de Castro Saffron Burrows. Throughout Klimt's life, a figure known as the Secretary Stephen Dillane comes and goes, who is actually a product of his fevered imagination -- and with whom the painter debates continually about the function of art in contemporary Western civilization, and the relevance of the artist. This enables Ruiz to create both a biographical sketch and a philosophical treatise. Visually, Ruiz and director of photography Ricardo Aronovich make the ambitious decision to recreate Klimt's style of painting on a cinematographic plane. Unfortunately, difficulty befell this picture from the beginning, when the director for some unascertainable reason opted to draft the initial script in French, have it translated into German, and then have the German draft translated into English and revised by author Gilbert Adair -- rendering the dialogue stilted and unconvincing. Complications also arose on the distribution end. Still infuriated by the distributive mutilation that befell his previous film, the whopping Time Regained and doubtless concerned that this might happen again, Ruiz pliantly struck a bargain with distributors for Klimt. He trimmed his original, 135-minute "director's cut" down to a 96-minute "producer's cut" for general consumption, which rendered much of the material less fluid and coherent. Both versions screened at the 2006 Rotterdam Film Festival.
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Special Features

"Making Of" featurette; Original theatrical trailer
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/8/2008
  • UPC: 741952315193
  • Original Release: 2006
  • Source: Koch Lorber Films
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:37:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 16,921

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
John Malkovich Klimt
Veronica Ferres Midi
Saffron Burrows Lea de Castro
Georgia Reeve Lea de Castro double [stand in]
Stephen Dillane Secretary
Paul Hilton Duke Octave
Paul Hilton Duke Octave
Sandra Ceccarelli Serena Lederer
Karl Fischer
Irina Wanka
Antje Charlotte Sieglin
Nikolai Kinski Egon Schiele
Joachim Bissemeyer
Ariella Hirschfeld
Verena Mundhenke
Peter Appiano
Aglaia Szyszkowitz
Mark Zak
Alexander Stobele
Dennis Petkovic
Annemarie Düringer
Marion Mitterhammer
Gunther Gillian Georges Méliès
Technical Credits
Raúl Ruiz Director, Screenwriter
Gilbert Adair Screenwriter
Ricardo Aronovich Cinematographer
Jorge Arriagada Score Composer
Iris Baumueller-Michel Casting
Paulo Branco Co-producer
Rudolf Czettel Production Designer
Alec Englander Casting
Fleischhaker Casting
Birgit Hutter Costumes/Costume Designer
Matthew Justice Producer
Arno Ortmair Producer
Dieter Pochlatko Producer
Valeria Sarmiento Editor
Andreas Schmid Producer
Schottldreier Casting
Michael Spencer Sound/Sound Designer
Marijan Vajda Asst. Director
Katharina Wöppermann Production Designer
Ira Zloczower Co-producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Klimt
1. Vienna 1918 [5:24]
2. Vienna 1900 [7:54]
3. The World Exposition [8:04]
4. Love at First Sight [10:24]
5. Vienna: The Secession [6:21]
6. Family Affairs [6:56]
7. Contaminated [6:30]
8. Mizzi [4:03]
9. No Doubt It's You [7:07]
10. Coffee House Philosophy [5:21]
11. The Professor [6:38]
12. Dr.'s Visit [4:02]
13. Different Layers [8:18]
14. Lost [6:14]
15. End Credits [4:07]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Klimt
   Play
   Chapters
   Set Up
      Dolby Digital 5.1
      Dolby Digital Stereo
   Bonus
      The Making of Klimt
      Trailer
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