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Movie Review: Klimt

Alternate Title: Crap

Story: This could be the worst movie I have seen so far in 2007. The subject of artist Gustav Klimt could be fodder for fascinating visuals, history, passion and story. None of these four ingredients exists in this insufferable bore.

Director Raoul Ruiz cut his 130 minute original film to 97 minutes of agony. I cannot imagine sitting through one second more of this pretentious garble. Klimt lived in the decadent time at the end of the 19th century in Hapsburg Empire Vienna (fin-de-siècle). The film opens and we see Klimt on his death bed being visited by a very goofy Egon Schiele. In a succession of non-linear flashbacks we see Klimt as he womanizes, pontificates, curses, visits his loony mother and sister, out of wedlock offspring, brothels, coffee houses and clinics. The dialogue is stilted, there is no story and I could not wait for the words 'the end' to appear.

There is a movie to be made about this character and time in history but this was not the movie. Stay away. Go to a museum to see his work instead.

Acting: John Malkovich as Klimt looks like he was sleep walking through this mess. Veronica Ferres as Midi, his long suffering friend was puzzling. I had no idea who she was or why she was in the film other than she had really nice outfits nd hats. Stephen Dillane as the Government Secretary was the only one who looked comfortable in this film. Saffron Burrows was a joke as the supposedly desirous Lea de Castro. Nikolai Kinski as Egon Schiele looked too much like Peter Lorre for me to not laugh whenever I saw him on screen

Predilection: I like films about artists - just not this one.

Critters: Several cats, a dog and lots of rabbits.

Food: Ah, the food was sumptuous with many shots of Viennese pastries.

Sex Spectrum: There is a wacky sex scene within the first five minutes. It involves a man without a leg and is head scratching in its absurdity. Lots of naked women.

Opening Titles: I don't remember.

Visual Art: Klimt's art is sumptuous but here it mostly looked washed out. There was one scene that involved gold leaf that was pretty.

Theater Audience: Five other horrified audience members.

Weather: It was cold in Vienna.

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 3

Squirm Scale: I squirmed because it was so very bad.

Drift Factor: I looked at my watch after only 10 minutes.

Predictability Level: Did not care what happened to anyone.

Tissue Usage: I cried that I wasted my time and money.

Oscar Worthy: Ha

Big Screen or Rental: Neither

Length: 97 grueling minutes