Leonie - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Leonie Reviews

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April 11, 2017
Beautiful, riveting and inspiring.

This is film is adapted from a biography of the famous artist and sculptor Isamu Noguchi with the focus on Noguchi's mother, (American) Leonie Gilmour.

Leonie was educated at Bryn Mawr, but she understood that her strong interest in poetry had to come from experience not books. This is how she met a Japanese writer Yone Noguchi, the father of her son Isamu. Leonie had struggles, as a single mother of Isamu and later of her daughter Ailes Gimour. This film presents the portrait of a woman, mother, writer with a love of life and art that she passed down to both children.

The cinematography is beautiful whether focused on America or Japan. The direction never is off, the film flows. The soundtrack made a beautiful frame to hold this movie. While Emily Mortimer as Leonie was the standout performance, all the actors, whether speaking English or Japanese, were uniformly strong and fully realized personalities. Looking at the credits, I can see why this movie is such a successful balance between West and East.

Stay for the credits to see some of the accomplishments of Isamu Noguchi. Accomplishments which never would have existed without the Leonie's life and choices. I wish this movie was hours longer, but it is a beautiful testament to a unique woman and art.
½ January 10, 2016
A movie with a beautiful pace and fine actors. I found my zen place for 100 minutes.
August 17, 2015
I really liked this tale of the strong woman, ahead of her time, who parented a great artist all on her own. It takes one independent spirit to nurture another, and the one she nurtured was an iconic figure in today's world of modern art. Without her encouragement, perhaps our world today would look very different.
Super Reviewer
November 26, 2014
In 1901, Leonie Gilmour(Emily Mortimer) is a recent graduate of Bryn Mawr University where she made some friends for life and was patronized by any number of male professors. For her first job, she becomes an editor for Yone Noguchi(Shido Nakamura) who she not only helps with his poetry but also assists in getting him published. Soon after, they fall in love and have a child together. By 1905, Japan is at war with Russia, and testestorone calls Yone back to his native country. So, with few other options, Leonie decamps with her son for Pasadena and the waiting arms of her mother(Mary Kay Place).

Aided by a very good lead performance from Emily Mortimer, "Leonie" seeks to tell the story of a true life pioneer who battled the patriarchy on two separate continents. Ironically, this was as Japan was modernizing, leaving behind some of its feudal ways, but becoming just as entrenched in others. And at the same time, the movie counterintuitively tries to undermine Leonie by reinforcing her traditional role as a mother, in this case, of Isamu Noguchi, a noted sculptor and not just in a by the way sort of fashion, either.
April 2, 2013
Very touching movie about the life of a very strong and independent woman who's only weakness is the man she loves. I really enjoyed the acting, the costumes and the music. Overall, I give it 5 stars out of 5.
½ March 26, 2013
Shoot me now. I just sat through this film in the hopes that there would be some moment, some relationship that moved me. Alas, it is boredom right to the end.
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