Monday, October 13, 2014

'Mr Turner' (2014) directed by Mike Leigh [LFF 2014]

"Prior to Mr. Turner, I’d assumed J.M.W. Turner was some upper-class dork with a silly accent, spending his days flouncing around a field somewhere (probably wearing a stupid old-timey hat). I dutifully trotted around the Turner Collection at Tate Britain and appreciated (rather than enjoyed) his paintings, but to be honest, landscapes aren’t really my cup of tea. I figured Turner was just one of those artists you’re expected to like, an institution rather than something that speaks to the heart.

After watching Mike Leigh’s biopic, however, my thoughts have changed. Turner, as seen through the lens of Mike Leigh and the performance of Timothy Spall, is a weirdly primal, sexually charged pig man who spits on his canvases, responds to questions with bestial grunts and is tangled up in some compulsive quasi-BDSM relationship with his housekeeper. From the moment we first see him silhouetted against the horizon, we’re gravitationally drawn to a man who’s sometimes a miserable old arsehole, sometimes sweet and romantic, but always fascinating to watch."

Read the rest here at We Got This Covered.


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