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Loving Vincent 2017

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About the Loving Vincent 💬

''We cannot speak other than by our paintings'' Written by Vincent van Gogh in a letter the week before his death.

LOVING VINCENT is the world's first fully oil painted feature film.

The film brings the paintings of Vincent van Gogh to life to tell his remarkable story. Every one of the 65,000 frames of the film is an oil-painting hand-painted by 125 professional oil-painters who traveled from all across the world to the Loving Vincent studios in Poland and Greece to be a part of the production. As remarkable as Vincent's brilliant paintings, is his passionate and ill-fated life, and mysterious death.

No other artist has attracted more legends than Vincent van Gogh. Variously labeled a martyr, a lustful satyr, a madman, a genius and a layabout, the real Vincent is at once revealed in his letters, and obscured by myth and time. Vincent himself said in his last letter: 'We cannot speak other than by our paintings'. We take him at his word and let the paintings tell the real story of Vincent van Gogh.

LOVING VINCENT was first shot as a live action film with actors, and then hand-painted over frame-by-frame in oils. The final effect is an interaction of the performance of the actors playing Vincent's famous portraits, and the performance of the painting animators, bringing these characters into the medium of paint.


Vincent was born in The Netherlands, the eldest surviving son of a Parson. His parents came from well-connected families. Vincent was named after his father's childless elder brother, Vincent 'Cent' van Gogh, who had made a fortune as Holland's pre-eminent art dealer. Vincent's parents where angling for their son to take over this lucrative business when choosing his name. Indeed, Vincent joined the art-dealing firm when he was 16. Despite having shown no particular interest in or aptitude for art as a child, Vincent threw himself into learning everything he could about art. This encyclopedic knowledge didn't stop him from being side-lined within the firm, as he was seen as unable to deal with clients, and eventually sacked. His sacking was a humiliation for his parents, and Vincent tried to redeem himself, after false starts as a teacher in England and a Bookseller's assistant in The Hague, by studying to become a parson like his father. However, this led to further humiliation when it became clear he wasn't academically gifted enough to pass the Pastor's exams despite a year of private coaching provided by his parents. Still, his father managed to secure him a position, although on the lowest rung of the ecclesiastical career ladder, as an evangelical preacher's assistant in the desperately poor mining district of the Borinage. Vincent was sacked from this lowly position for being 'excessively religious'. He gave away the church's possessions, his own food, and even his own clothes, to the miners.

Vincent then reached a low point, refusing help from his family, and living in a hay barn in the Borinage. His beloved younger brother, Theo van Gogh, who unlike his brother was working successfully for the art dealership, visited him to try and revive him out of his depression. Theo suggested that Vincent should capitalize on his love of art, and work to become an artist. Vincent, aged 27, grabbed at this lifeline and started teaching himself to draw from manuals provided by Theo. Although drawing didn't come naturally to him, Vincent's prodigious work ethic, often practicing all through the day and all through the nights as well, led him to steadily improve.

He was taken under the wing of his Uncle by marriage, Anton Mauve, Holland's most famous living painter. However, Vincent fell out with Mauve, partly because Vincent had taken in a prostitute and her children into his studio. This scandalized his whole family, and under financial pressure from Theo, who was supporting him completely, he moved back to his parent's parsonage. As fast as Vincent's work was improving, it was here that Vincent completed his first masterpiece, 'the potato eaters', his relations with his family were deteriorating. Vincent had declared himself completely against the church and fought bitterly with his father. When his father died prematurely of a heart attack his sisters and mother blamed Vincent, saying the stress he heaped on his father had put him in an early grave.

After short and unsuccessful spells in Antwerp and on the moorland of Drenthe Vincent turned up on Theo's doorstep in Paris. Theo's connections got Vincent into the Cormon Atelier, alongside bright young painters such as Toulouse-Lautrec and Emile Bernard.

Vincent was rather shunned by the younger and, by everyone's reckoning at the time, more talented painters, until Theo was appointed by his gallery to buy impressionist art. This made Theo the most sought after the friend for painters working in the new styles, and this made Vincent sought after the company as well. There followed three months where Vincent together with Theo were at the center of a group of the most interesting new painters. However, their party lifestyle was severely damaging Theo's health and also Vincent felt his work was stagnating. So Vincent struck out on his own for the South in search of sunshine and blossoms, like in the Japanese prints he was obsessed with.

Very unusually when he arrived in Arles in Provence it was snowing, however, it wasn't long before the snow melted and the blossoms burst forth. Also bursting out, from Vincent, was a new style of painting, the style we recognize today as Vincent's style, which synthesized his Dutch period, the new styles he had learned in Paris and his study of Japanese prints. Alongside a prodigious output of new paintings Vincent concocted a plan to set up an artists' studio, which other artists from his Paris group could come and join him in, and so he rented the Yellow House. Only Gauguin, enticed by freeboard and rent, made the trip. A brief honeymoon period was soon eclipsed as competition and resentment grew between them, and heated arguments raged in the Yellow House, until one night after an argument, Vincent sliced off his ear and made a present of it to his favorite whore. Gauguin left Arles the next morning, and Vincent was committed to the local mental asylum. After two weeks Vincent seemed completely recovered from his fit, but after a month his health deteriorated again, and under pressure from his neighbors, who signed a petition asking the mayor to remove him, Vincent voluntarily committed himself to the private mental asylum at St Remy in the Alpilles. For one year he alternated between feeling completely normal and having periods of terrifying fits until he considered himself well enough to leave.

He traveled back up North, to be near Theo, but didn't want the bustle and distractions of Paris, so he moved to the sleepy resort village of Auvers-Sur-Oise, an hour outside of Paris. The village had long been a magnet for painters, following in the footsteps of Charles Daubigny, and many of the bigger houses were second homes for rich Parisians. As well as its reputation for tolerating painters, additionally Vincent was there because of Doctor Paul Gachet, a doctor who specialized in treating melancholia in artists, and who was a passionate supporter of the new painters in Paris, and Doctor to other painters such as friend to the Van Gogh's, Pissarro. Gachet was something of a painter himself, and aspired to be more that what he was, a gentleman painter.

Vincent at first seemed to fare well in Auvers-sur-Oise, and threw himself into his work and also a friendship with Doctor Gachet. However, Vincent was still worried about many aspects of his life: money, his state of health, his brother and his brother's new baby, his isolation from people. There also seems to have been a deterioration in his initially warm relations with Doctor Gachet, and only 10 weeks after arriving in Auvers-sur-Oise, having painted 70 paintings, Vincent arrived back at the Ravoux Inn on a Sunday night with a mortal wound to his chest. He stated that he had shot himself. He came back without the painting gear that he had left with, and without a gun on him. Neither his painting gear nor the gun was ever found. Vincent died two days later, his beloved brother Theo at his side.

Loving Vincent Movie Details 🎥

Directed by

Dorota Kobiela

Hugh Welchman

Writing Credits

Dorota Kobiela

Hugh Welchman

Jacek Dehnel


Douglas Booth (voice)

Robert Gulaczyk (voice)

Saoirse Ronan (voice)

Eleanor Tomlinson (voice)

Jerome Flynn (voice)

Chris O'Dowd (voice)

John Sessions (voice)

Aidan Turner (voice)

Helen McCrory (voice)

James Greene (voice)

Bill Thomas (voice)

Martin Herdman (voice)

Robin Hodges (voice)

Josh Burdett (voice)

Holly Earl (voice)

Joe Stuckey (voice)

Music by

Clint Mansell

Cinematography by

Lukasz Zal

Tristan Oliver

Categories: Oscars, Oscar Academy Award Nominee, Golden Globes, Golden Globe Nominee, EEBAFTAs, BAFTA Award Nominee, EFA, European Film Award Winner

Genres: Animation, Biography, Crime, Drama, Mystery

Countries: Poland, United Kingdom, Qatar, United States

Loving Vincent Official Trailer

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