Puccini - La Boheme (2007)
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Critic Reviews for Puccini - La Boheme
The result is approachable for newcomers, but with Dornhelm's camera keeping a close watch on group dynamics, it'll remind old hands to look beyond the creamy melodies.
Trying to bring opera to a wider audience through film is always a losing battle, just like any in-your-face sales tactic.
Robert Dornhelm's chocolate-box production of Puccini's most popular opera, La Bohème, is far more enjoyable when you close your eyes.
Cinema unfortunately magnifies opera's convention of very broad acting, especially that of the minor players who have nothing to do but look on, do big "reaction" faces, and virtually sing "Rhubarb, rhubarb" to each other.
Rest assured, there's no lack of gusto here, director Dornhelm complementing the virtuosity of his performers with pleasing camerawork and subtle stylistic flourishes (colour fades, split screens, and an impressively stark finale).
The vocals of Anna Netrebko as Mimi and Rolando Villazon as Rodolfo are certainly powerful. But powerful singing alone does not make for a powerful movie.
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