“Loving Vincent” Review – Gigantic Achievment in Storytelling But Not Very Much Else

Mongrel Media

There’s a clear sense of ambition that film-making duo, Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, holstered while going about making this project. For those of you who didn’t know, Loving Vincent is the worlds first feature film animated entirely from oil-paintings. Over a hundred artists helped create over sixty thousand paintings that brought the visuals in this film to life. So, at the very least, it’s consistently visually interesting but everything else? Not so much.

Outside of how aesthetically pleasing the visuals turn out to be – with the explosive color pallet that covers a plethora of colors – there really isn’t that much that Loving Vincent has to offer. A great amount of the voice acting is serviceable, even though it feels like everyone is just applying minimal effort. Chris O’Dowd (as usual) makes use of his limited amount of screen-time with a vocal performance that resonates with you throughout the entire runtime. His monologue about the whole town being turned against Van Gogh was one that echoed in my brain for the rest of the night. I was subtly hoping that we would get at least one more of those satisfying character moments throughout the narrative, but unfortunately it was not to be.

The film’s dialogue did, in fact, feel very natural and the chemistry between a good amount of the voice actors did add some extra “points”. Although, I just couldn’t shake off the feeling of how much better this film would’ve been if it was just entirely focused on the final days of Vincent Van Gogh and not about a man who plays “detective” in order to find out how he died. Mainly because it was terribly hard to care about anything that was going on outside of Van Gogh’s tale, due to the extremely bland characters.

Loving Vincent is still worth seeing because of how ambitious it’s visual tactics are but at the same time, it posses all the characteristics of something I would normally say isn’t worth the price of admission. The gorgeous oil-paintings are the only thing that really gives you an extra jilt to attempt to view it in a cinema. At the very least, it’s visually beautiful for its entire runtime which also leads to a sense of constant entertainment/curiosity. Long story short? See it eventually, but don’t go out of your way for it.

Rating: 5/10

Loving Vincent is now playing in limited theaters across Canada.

Leave a Reply