[Edited for link rot, 7/26/15]

I just graded the last forty papers and I am too tired to post, but because of exhaustion, my resistance to historical drama was low and I started watching “The Impressionists,” which I have been avoiding for fear that my hate for Monet and impressionist painting would make me hate Mr. Armitage for taking this role. I am pleasantly surprised, mostly because he is so smiley in this film (despite the many sad points in the story). This is kind of what I needed today: no angst, no insecurity, no brooding–a tall, reasonably confident heterosexual male who galumphs around, regularly expresses his delight in things, and lights up the screen. This picture of episode 2 exemplifies what I needed to see Armitage doing today:

Maybe I haven’t seen enough of his work yet, but my general impression has been that he doesn’t do joy well. Seeing this made me think I am wrong about that, and I am grateful.

~ by Servetus on March 5, 2010.

6 Responses to “Respite”

  1. Congratulations for this new great place!


  2. I haven’t seen this yet, but I long to!
    You really don’t like Impressionism? And Monet? Well, I’m no art critic, but I have always loved that style of painting, as well as the Group of Seven. Most of the modern art leaves me cold!
    Glad this movie cheered you up!


  3. Thanks to you both for being among the first commenters!

    Phylly3, I study an earlier period of history and I stop really enjoying western art around 1650. I’ve also always felt that Monet is overmarketed. One thing I enjoyed about what I have seen so far is seeing some of Monet’s painting besides the lilies and the facade of the cathedral. By the way, you can watch most of it on youtube.


  4. Do you think, though, that the script (The Impressionists) didn’t offer a truly compelling storyline or scope for character-developing? Will have to watch again, and possibly re-think that.

    Phylly3: I’m also a student of earlier history (mediaeval), as well as art history. Pity that Monet-marketing focuses on those lilies. Rouen Cathedral and Haystacks are more interesting!



  5. Actually, one reason I didn’t originally prioritize watching it was because of the documentary qualities (I was dreading someone voicing over Monet’s history and Mr. Armitage performing a pantomime). Maybe I am prejudiced, but those were some of the most compelling scenes, as above, the scene where Monet runs out to the beach to glimpse the sun. I definitely think there are limits, but any script is going to set limits to character development for the actors, and I don’t think fiction is different from non-fiction in that regard.


  6. […] worth a relisten — even though I am on record as not admiring Monet as a person and not liking impressionist painting at all. There’s this disarming moment when he’s asked what he knew about Monet before playing […]


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