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Peter Greenaway (1942- )
Related: 1942 - British cinema - director - art films - surrealism in the cinema - experimental films
Collaborators: Michael Nyman
Films: The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover (1989)
Peter Greenaway (b. April 5, 1942) is a British filmmaker trained as a painter and a famous for his movies and exhibitions.
Greenaway grew up in England, but was born in Newport in Wales (his mother is Welsh). The family left Wales when Greenaway was three years old and moved to Essex, England. At an early age he decided he wanted to be a painter. He developed an interest in European cinema, focusing on the films of Antonioni, Bergman, Godard, Pasolini and Resnais. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Greenaway [Dec 2004]
- The Draughtsman's Contract (1982) - Peter Greenaway [Amazon US]
This tale of a 17th Century draughtsman who takes a commission to do drawings of a wealthy Englishman's estate only if he can "do" the Lady of the estate at the same time, is an intriguing piece for those unhurried and with a taste for something different.
Meticulously recreating the era, with the best candlelit scenes since Barry Lyndon, we realize that a stately sort of mystery is unfolding as we watch the arrogant artist have his way with first the mistress of the house and then her daughter, all the while insulting and denigrating everyone around him.
The Draughtsman is arrogant, self-confident, and sure that he is superior to the aristocratic twits he serves with his art. That he believes he is smarter than everyone around him will come around to be his undoing. Being used while he thinks he is doing the using, the Draughtsman finds out too late that he has been nothing more than a pawn in a game he never understood.
Not for everyone, I found the film fascinating but as detached and aloof as its protagonist. This cold detachment becomes the wry amusement in the story, but also separates us from any emotional connection to the characters. There are also the typical Greenaway non sequiturs, in this case a naked fool, painted, posing as statues etc. At any rate, worth a look for those wanting something different. -- Amazon.com Customer from Anaheim, CA United States
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