Mary Poppins Returns
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All Critics (7)
| Top Critics (5)
| Fresh (6)
| Rotten (1)
The film is badly overconceived, especially when Candaele divides her subjects' stories into five chapters based on the symphony's respective movements, but the personal reminiscences are stirring and occasionally heartbreaking.
Writer-director Kerry Candaele incisively documents the ideological legacy of opus 125 in Chile, China and Germany.
Despite the good intentions, structurally it's all over the place with an excess of montages, archival footage, interviews and information practically drowning out any chance to appreciate the richness of the German composer's beloved achievement.
All the film's segments are smartly assembled and gracefully paced. Oh, and the score's pretty good, too.
Each anecdote builds upon the next to create that rarest of films: a documentary as ineffable and transformative in its reach as it sets out to be.
The film rarely lets you contemplate the music without competition from strong images, and another five or so minutes could have offered background to the work itself. But like Beethoven's, this Ninth leaves you wanting more.
A perceptive look at how the "Ode to Joy" served as an anthem for liberation struggles, something Beethoven clearly intended as a partisan of the French Revolution.
There are no featured reviews for Following the Ninth: In the Footsteps of Beethoven's Final Symphony at this time.
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