15 September 2006 | dbdumonteil
I' ve always loved you,Frank Borzage...
...and I always will...
Some say his post WW2 works were inferior to the thirties major works .Perhaps so.But it is no reason to dismiss them.
"I've always loved you" is unique,it defines music as a way of communicating emotions.Leopold and Myra use Rachmaninoff (mainly "Second" ),Beethoven ,Lizt and other musicians to express their admiration,their tenderness,their love,their jealousy,their pride,their lust for life,their hate,their contempt ,you name it.In the central scene ,where Myra plays the piano with Leopold's full symphonic orchestra is a real desperate fight ,probably the best concert scene ever filmed (with the eventual exception of Hitchcock's "the man who knew too much" (1956))And that scene is followed by another one where the two musicians ,although miles apart ,continue their "conversation" in a strange telepathy.
The audience who knows Borzage's earlier works (such as "three comrades" "little man what now?" "mortal storm" "cargo" ...) might be disoriented while watching the beginning of the movie .But the master's touch is still here.
Two elements are Borzagesque:the first is George's character.He is akin to Hans ("little man" ) and to the "three comrades" .He is the man who believes in true love ,the simple man who is like a bull in a china shop when he attends the first concert but whose heart is always in the right place.
And the other one is Mme Maria Ouspenskaya (she is granted a "Mme" during the cast and credits!) who was the unforgettable mother of Martin (James Stewart) in Borzage's memorable "mortal storm" .Here she portrays Leopold's mother with authority.Her death is a great moment of delicacy when the music stops in her hand.
Probably not as appealing as Borzage's earlier works,this film is yet waiting to be rediscovered.