Woman in Gold (2015)

PG-13   |    |  Biography, Drama, History

Woman in Gold (2015) Poster

Maria Altmann, an octogenarian Jewish refugee, takes on the Austrian government to recover artwork she believes rightfully belongs to her family.


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12 April 2016 | krocheav
| Compelling History
'Woman in Gold' makes for a dazzling movie experience (even if at times it may leave you questioning it's authenticity). Having not been an admirer of Mirren's early screen work - she seems to have become better with age (well, for me anyway), I was taken with her portrayal of Maria Altman from start to finish (as also in 'The Queen'). Ryan Reynolds gives good support as the young Lawyer taking on a case above his station. Reynolds, whose style is somewhat reminiscent of a young Kevin Costner, plays the Randol Schoenberg part with conviction.

London born director Simon Curtis gives the proceedings an easy to watch style and with the help of documentary editor Peter Lambert, they keep the viewer engaged throughout. Curtis also gets to direct his American wife (in a guest style role) Elizabeth McGovern, who has since made England her home. First time feature screenplay writer Alexi Kaye Campbell has fashioned an interesting interpretation of the writings of Altman and Schoeenberg's own life experiences, looking back at yet another of humanity's all time low past atrocities - although as mentioned, for some, certain sections of the screenplay may not always ring true (?)

Cinematographer Ross Emery (Matrix) gets a chance to prove he's also good without the help of tons of big budget CGI. It's hard to tell who did what with the music score, credited to both Martin Phipps and Hans Zimmer but, it's pleasing in an unobtrusive manor. Design Guru's, Andrew Ackland-Snow and brothers Dominic and Giles Masters (Harry Potter) with the help of others, ensure it looks good - perhaps while also getting a chance to strut their stuff without being drenched in CGI.

As a minor point, some location settings in Austria seemed a little too devoid of people to give an accurate representation, still, it's an amazing human story, both informative and entertaining. It should please most sophisticated audiences, while letting us reflect on an episode from our dark past.

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