Subject: [club-l] Richter - review
Для читающих по-английски - рецензия на фильм "Рихтер, загадка".
Возможно, вам будет любопытно узнать, что думают о фильме на Западе.
The Film That No-one Wanted
By Joseph E. Romero
PARIS, 9 September 1998 - NVC Arts (a Warner Music Group company) has now
released Bruno Monsaingeon's acclaimed biographical documentary about the
pianist Sviatoslav Richter, who died of a heart attack just over a year ago
at the age of 82. The Ukrainian-born pianist of German descent was one of
the greatest musicians of the Soviet era, and for many, one of the 20th century's
The video is available in many markets, but not the United States where classical
music buffs and net users are having difficulty acquiring the video or accurate
information about it. Not surprising, since classical music videos for network
TV, once thought to be the Lost Horizon, have turned out to be a mere mirage
as ratings drop. Still, NVC Arts marketing executive Alexandra Law in London
hopes the film will eventually reach America but said that no agreement has
yet been reached with a US distributor.
Moreover, according to a source at the Paris-based production company, American
and British "cultural" television stations consider the film "too erudite"
and have shied away from the film because of its length. The irony is that
America greeted Richter with glowing headlines and a cover story in Life
Magazine when he first toured the United States in 196O. However, times have
changed. Has entertainment replaced culture? A single screening of the film
is scheduled on 17 September 1998 at the Barbican Centre in London and on
22 January 1999 at the Walter Reade Theatre in New York.
In Europe, the Franco-German television station ARTE has taken the leap and
will broadcast the two and a half hour epic by the French writer-director
in two installments tonight at 21h40 and on 16 September at 22h30, on ARTE's
weekly programme, Musica.
Entitled Richter, l'Insoumis (in English Richter, the Enigma) and produced
by Idйale Audience/IMG Artists, the film retraces Richter's early life in
the Soviet Union and the major episodes in his career from the 1940s until
the early 1990s. The film is significant not only for its exclusive on-camera
conversations with the iconoclast pianist, but also for Richter's compelling
first person narrative - a brilliant editorial touch. The result is Richter
according to Richter - before the biographers, scholars and writers of books
have a go at him.
While Richter tells his story, Montsaingeon's striking montage of photographs,
home videos and rare clips flash across the screen to illustrate memories
and observations about family, music, composers and colleagues such as Heinrich
Neuhaus, Wagner, Prokofiev or Emil Gilels. Here and there Richter's monologue
is dramatically punctuated with astonishing performances from concerts in
Moscow and elsewhere in the 1950s and 1960s. The effect is reviting.
Monsaingeon also interviews several members of Richter's entourage, notably
his life-long companion, Nina Dorliac, who died last May. Few details of
the couple's personal relationship are offered, although a marriage was celebrated
posthumously six months after Richter's death.
Other footage includes eulogistic reminiscences by Glenn Gould and Artur
Rubinstein. Richter's comments on his relationship with Benjamin Britten
at the Aldeburgh Festival, Karajan and his collaboration with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau
offer additional perspectives on the artist and his performing career. The
film also confirms that there was nothing glamourous about life in the Soviet
Union. Somehow, Richter seems to thrive on austerity and manages to sail
deftly, albeit naively through the political vicissitudes and bleak background
of the Soviet era.
If the film has a weakness, it is in the chronology of the war years and
the dramatic events surrounding the death of Richter's father and his mother's
remarriage. While repeated viewings might clarify Richter's impressions and
experiences during that period, it is unlikely that they would ever elucidate
what seems to be a rather knotty, Soviet version of Hamlet from which the
scars never healed.
Like many French film makers Monsaingeon tends to stare at his subject as
if prolonged, visual scrutiny could solve the Richter enigma. It cannot,
of course, but instead makes only too clear that the ailing musician, at
the time of filming, is on the threshold of death. This is particulary true
in the closing images of the film - a moment of profound sadness - when Richter
raises a hand to his brow, covers his face and withdraws from the camera
whose presence, discreet as it may be, suddenly seems indecent. That having
been said, the film is a distinguished achievement and a major contribution
to the cultural memory of an important musician.