I borrowed the film to see Tim Roth in it, and I came out of it seeing the well-known story of Van Gogh and his brother in a slightly different way. Theo, who names his child Vincent, Vincent who, perhaps, tries to lessen his brother's financial difficulties by getting out of the way . . . not knowing that his brother, too, was clinging on him for his life. It may seem overly dramatic, the way the story was told, hovering, in fact, between restraint and the overly dramatic . . . with Tim Roth making his very expressive faces when he takes in a scene, baring his teeth, tasting paint, dragging himself home after shooting himself . . . but somehow it works really well for the topic, feels like the best way to say the story of Vincent and Theo. Theo is almost just as tormented as his brother, trying to do what other expect him to, never really caring for money except as far as it may help others: his brother, his wife, even Gauguin.
There's a lot of expressive color in the movie: on Van Gogh's paintings, on his clothes, his face, a lot of black at funerals that stands out, sun flowers and other fields . . . The interiors are also nice, photographed so you could take in their layout, their details . . . The costumes, too, stand out, the prostitute's in the beginning among them. Every little scene, in fact, is carefully constructed in terms of dialogue, camera movement, colors, which all give very theatrical effects.
A really good film, which at first seems deceptively simple.