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3.2 out of 5 stars
3.2 out of 5 stars
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on 10 July 2017
Bit depressing...
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on 22 March 2014
This film continues from where Coco Before Chanel left of, unfortunately this is more arty farty, and apart from Cocos making of her no 5 perfume and igors struggles, this is boring and bland.
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on 27 November 2010
I purchased this DVD expecting to revel in a feast of wonderful acting and gorgeous images of fashion design and interiors. But I was so very disappointed. Clearly the lighting cameraman/director of photography decided use only available 'light' or in this case available 'dark'. The use of additional lighting is minimal to the point of absurdity. I am all for 'breaking the rules' but only if the results are excellent. In this case they most decidedly are not.

As a freelance professional photographer I enjoy rich, full colours and prefer a slightly underexposed result. I also rejoice in wonderful, masterly lighting eg Gordon Willis' work in The Godfather. But in this film so much of it is almost black to the point that it is hard to discern what is going on. As a result it is impossible to see how good the actors really are because from what little it is possible to see they are brilliant. On seeing the finished result they must have thought 'why did we bother'.

Given the superb visual style of Madame Chanel's world I expected this film to reflect that. Maybe it does but it is impossible to see it. I wonder why this DoP was selected to shoot this subject? It is unlikely that he is inept/inexperienced given that he was selected for the job. Equally it cannot be the constraints of the budget that meant that there was no money to rent the lighting equipment etc. So it can only have been blind arrogance that has given us a result we are unable to enjoy. Either way, in my view, he should have been fired on seeing the first rushes.

In short, I would not recommend anyone to buy this DVD
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on 23 August 2011
I have over 1250 blurays and this is by far the worst looking transfer I've ever seen on the bluray format. Someone else suggested it may have been intentionally shot very dark but the US Sony Pictures Classics release proves this theory to be wrong. All details in shadows is completely lost- the picture is just too dark and don't think by turning up the brightness on the tv the problem will be fixed- it won't. I sat thru the first 20 minutes and thats about all I could take...I could barely see what was going on. Someone at Soda Pictures who released this bluray completely screwed this bluray up. Avoid at all costs...you'll regret buying this. Nuff' said.
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on 7 April 2017
Excellent movie
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on 22 December 2010
You may be shocked that I have given this film one star. Ok, the cinematography, the costumes, the misé-en-scene are all excellent. But is a handsome gloss enough to excuse the bladder-skite that this film truly is? Would a beautifully photographed cow-pat be something that you would want to return to again and again?

The main problem with this film is that the portrayal of Stravinsky. I'll not worry myself about the unlikelihood of his affair with Chanel, since he did actually fall in love (with Vera de Bosset) whilst married in a manner similar to that which is portrayed in this miserable little film. I have not spent the required amount of time investigating the sordid details of his extra-marital relations with de Bosset, although he married her later in life. What I do know is that Stravinky's religious convictions were no small matter. One only has to listen to him speaking in the documentary "Once at a border" and listen to the passion with which he says "I believe in the LORD!" A superficial reading of his biography creates a confusion: how can such a religious man have betrayed his first wife in such a manner? Perhaps the true situation was a lot more subtle...

Anyway, let's not get into that. What is also a matter of easily verified fact is that basic nature of Stravinsky's personality, which is completely ignored in this film. He was a verbose speaker and was extremely charming and energetic. He was filled with the joy of life. What he have in this film is a kind of dour thicko who cannot utter more than a few words at a time. Basically, he spends his time wondering around Chanel's house in morose silence. This silence is supposed to represent his inner turmoil, but it doesn't. At a dinner party he is asked whether he believes in fate or coincidence and he is unable to offer any answer whatsoever. I cannot even judge the acting in this film because the actors are in general given very little to do. The filmmaker clearly thinks that having characters stand around saying very little is dramatic. It is not. Barry Lyndon by Stanley Kubrick is often described as having a similar quality, but in actual fact there is plenty of spoken word in that film. In this film there is effectively no substantial dialogue.

Here is the real killer: in a film about Stravinsky there is VERY little of his music employed - just Rite of Spring and Symphonies of Wind Instruments (only a brief usage of this). After a fairly lukewarm reenactment of the famous premiere of the former piece (a recent British film did this immeasurably better), the film moves forward to 1920, when Stravinsky had already left behind his Russian works and was moving into the more vapid neoclassical period (interestingly coinciding with his real-life affair). At this point he was beginning work on Pulcinella. But in this film he is apparently still writing Rite of Spring! He is even seen writing its manuscript and Chanel looks at the final page where he has written "Finis." It is clearly the final bars of the Rite. This makes no sense whatsoever. He did revise the piece somewhat, but in the 40s and 60s. So what he have here is a nonsense.

The musical nonsense gets even worse. The filmmakers have decided that Stravinsky did not write music good enough for their film, despite the fact that Petrouchka and Rite of Spring are cultural treasures of similar importance to the pyramids at Giza, and instead hired a well-known, but semitalented composer, to fill in Stravinsky's perceived gaps! So now we have a film about one of the greatest composers, accompanied by music which sounds like one of Keith Jarrett's improvisations - during the passages when he gets bored and runs out of ideas.

I felt quite depressed after watching this film.
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on 19 November 2011
My first observation is that there are trailers that are unskippable. Is it any wonder people look for pirate copies of films when you are rewarded when buying something by having adverts inflicted on you?

Secondly, I could not watch this film it was too dark to see anything. This is either a technical flaw in the DVD's mastering, or the film really is like that. I racked up brightness and contrast but it it's no good and when the film is one that relies on subtitles then it's a hopeless case. The audio too has been wrongly mixed. Sound effects are loud, dialogue is soft. I would think it a fault in my DVD player, but no, it's the DVD. I only lasted ten minutes but what I saw of the dialogue seemed ludicrous, one person called the other "Vaslav Nijinsky" in conversation, presumably so the audience would know who he was.

Don't bother - seek out the recreation of the full Sacre Nijinsky ballet. No stars.. Oh has to be one star.
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on 29 November 2010
The reviews of the American Blu-Ray are so enthusiastic that I can't help thinking someone screwed up the transfer to Blu-Ray this side of the pond. The American Blu-Ray is from Sony, where the UK is from "Soda Pictures Ltd". The Blu-Ray is almost unwatchable because it's so dark. "Crushed blacks" doesn't even begin to describe it. The only way I could see the picture was to turn the brightness setting up to a ridiculously high level. I can't believe this is the way the film was meant to be seen. I have over 1000 Blu-Rays and the picture quality on this stitle is one of the worst - not because of the usual grain, overuse of DNR or anything else but just because most of the time large areas of the screen are just a solid jet black color.
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on 30 March 2014
I love this film.
Mads, as always, is amazing as ever! I have yet to see him in a film that lets him down.
Highly recommend anyone seeing this film.
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on 18 October 2010
I was lucky enough to see this film earlier this year, it is absolutely fabulous. If you love France, this is the film for you. The cameraman is incredible, whizzing you in and out of scenes in a most delightfull manner making you feel as though you really are in Paris. The actors are superb. I just loved every minute.
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