In Search of Haydn (2012)
Average Rating: 6.1/10
Reviews Counted: 12
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 3
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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 2
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 1
Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 63
Phil Grabsky's biographical account of the life of Haydn is a visual and aural extravaganza including breath-taking performances by some of the world's most celebrated and contemporary musicians. As with his previous films on Mozart and Beethoven, Grabsky follows the same format of presenting the composer's biography and music chronologically. Through intimate and revealing interviews with experts and detailed extracts from Haydn's personal letters, the audience gains tremendous insight not only
Apr 6, 2012 Limited
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The result is an absorbing and illuminating portrait of a composer whose popularity actually exceeded that of Wolfgang and Ludwig during his day.
Is the best way to bring audiences to this fantastic music to make them feel like they're back at school?
You don't need to be interested in classical music to find the results engrossing.
Classical music groupies will rejoice over Grabsky's seemingly-final entry in this documentary series -- but is it indeed the last word? Who else could he possibly construct a film around? Vivaldi? Bach? Debussy? Prokofiev?
In Search of Haydn is the third in Phil Grabsky's fine trilogy of films about great classical composers, a worthy successor to In Search of Mozart and the somewhat less successful In Search of Beethoven.
This is a film that sweeps away preconceptions with a very thorough broom.
Perhaps more suited to television, the film nevertheless will please classical music fans and Haydn is certainly owed a renewed assessment and a current audience.
Though assorted experts do their best to sound excited about Haydn, some seem to be fighting the sense that from a post-Romantic perspective his output, like his life, lacks a certain wow factor.
Grabsky does have a great gift for showing how a piece is put together. The music is the thing.
Part of the success of the film lies in just talking to very intelligent and authoritative people -- musicians, conductors, historians -- and letting them have their say, simple as that.
I learned much about this likable man (including the fact that there's only one picture of him without a wig and that he never appeared with his head uncovered), and I intend to hear more of his music.
In the vein of Grabsky's documentaries about the musical genius of Mozart & Beethoven, (but) in the final evaluation, I felt slightly disappointed in this documentary, which seems to go through the motions rather than excite its audience with conviction
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