Parlons Cinéma: Van Gogh (1991) Thursday February 15 at 5 pm

Event Details

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  • Price: This is a free event.

This month, as we continue to explore the lives of artists, we discuss Maurice Pialat’s 1991 film Van Gogh, starring the popular singer of the period, Jacques Dutronc. Pialat is acknowledged as one of France’s most powerful and thoughtful directors of the twentieth century.

four-star review at says, “Maurice Pialat’s Van Gogh has the feel of authenticity about it… This is partly down to Pialat’s striking minimalist style, brought to life by some extraordinarily beautiful cinematography, and also the first-rate acting performances. Jacques Dutronc [who won the César best acting award for the film] makes a surprisingly convincing Van Gogh–alternately intense and playful, anything but a naive stereotype of the celebrated artist.”

Screen the film at home on Kanopy (free to library card holders), MUBI, Apple TV, Amazon, or other popular streaming services, and then join Joelle Pluchon and Peter Zingg at 5:00 pm on Thursday, February 15 for a bilingual discussion on Zoom.

Film Details

Original title / Titre originale: Van Gogh (1991)
Running time / Durée: 2h38m
Genres: Drama
Directed by / Réalisé par: Maurice Pialat
Casting: Jacques Dutronc, Alexandra London, Bernard Le Coq, Gérard Séty, Corinne Bourdon
Stream it online / Regarder sur: Kanopy, MUBI, Fandor Amazon Channel, Cohen Media Amazon Channel, Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Vudu

Les derniers jours du peintre Van Gogh venu se faire soigner chez le docteur Gachet à Auvers-sur-Oise. Terribles derniers jours partagés entre une création intensive, des amours malheureuses et surtout le désespoir.

In late spring, 1890, Vincent moves to Auvers-sur-Oise, near Paris, under the care of Dr. Gachet, living in a humble inn. Fewer than 70 days later, Vincent dies from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. We see Vincent at work, painting landscapes and portraits. His brother Theo, wife Johanna, and their baby visit Auvers. Vincent is playful and charming, engaging the attentions of Gachet’s daughter Marguerite (who’s half Vincent’s age), a young maid at the inn, Cathy a Parisian prostitute, and Johanna. Shortly before his death, Vincent visits Paris, quarrels with Theo, disparages his own art and accomplishments, dances at a brothel, and is warm then cold toward Marguerite.


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