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Movie Review: Edvard Munch

Alternate Title: The Scream Heard 'round the World

Story: 'The Scream', by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch (1863-1944) is an image that most people can easily visualize. It represents all of the angst, emotional turmoil and despair that we are share.

This restored version of the 1976 film is terrific. If you like to watch artists toil, emote and passionately bring emotional baggage to their art, then this film is for you. Director Peter Watkins lovingly portrays this world famous artist in a cinema verite style.

The information for this film was taken from Munch's own diaries. We see how the ghosts of his past reveal themselves in his artwork. No artist works in a vacuum, and director Watkins successfully shapes world events to match the social and economic times of Norway and Europe in the late 19th Century.

If you like art, artists, the creative process and fine filmmaking, then this gem is for you.

For more info on Munch and to see some of his art work go to: http://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/munch/

Acting: Other than Geir Westby as a fine Munch most of the other actors were not professionals. Many of the actresses reminded me of Liv Ullmann.

Predilection: I like films about artists.

Food: With all of that angst and tuberculosis there is little time for fine dining.

Visual Art: More art than one could possibly want.

Theater Audience: A very crowded small theater where this is probably the only place in the galaxy it is playing.

Drift Factor: It is a long film and I drifted when I thought I needed to get home to walk my dog, Benny.

Soap Box: Not a soap box, more of a 'did you know'? In the wonderful book Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883 by Simon Winchester I learned lots of interesting stuff. Three months after the eruption vivid red sunset afterglows were visible throughout the world for over three years. It is thought that many of the artists of the day (including Munch) were inspired by these amazing daily sunsets.

Big Screen or Rental: I doubt that you have a choice but to rent this gem. For some other artist's biopics, try renting: Vincent and Theo, Basquiat, Pollock and Frida

Length: Way over the two hour limit at 2 hours and 47 minutes. Ouch!