Run time: 90 mins
Geoffrey Rush’s buoyant performance as painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti brings colour to Stanley Tucci’s delightfully playful look at the life of the Swiss painter.
Set in Paris of 1964, and seen through the eyes of American writer James Lord (Armie Hammer), hours turn to days as the faultlessly polite Lord has the fortune and then the misfortune of posing for Giacometti’s latest portrait.
Becoming slave to the whims of a creator wracked with self-doubt, Lord is also witness to Giacometti’s turbulent personal life, befriending his hard-done-by wife Annette, his devoted brother Diego and his manic mistress Caroline (Clémence Poésy). Optimistic and patient at first, he eventually concedes, taking to other means to relieve the physical and psychological strain.
An entertaining examination of the shifting dynamic between artist and subject, Final Portrait plays like a farce, beautifully shot but drained of colour to fit Giacometti’s sombre visual style. Constant wit and a jaunty score also keep this more than afloat, acting as a breath of fresh air in quagmire of artist biopics.
“There’s a lot to dig into here – and Geoffrey Rush hasn’t had a showcase this good in years.” (Empire) (research Chris Coetsee) Low key and not to be missed.