Woman in Gold (2015)
Maria Altmann, an octogenarian Jewish refugee, takes on the Austrian government to recover a world famous painting of her aunt plundered by the Nazis during World War II, she believes rightfully belongs to her family. She did so not just to regain what was rightfully hers, but also to obtain some measure of justice for the death, destruction, and massive art theft perpetrated by the Nazis.
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There is, somehow, an interesting story here, as well as some good acting. There are also some good scenes
A terrific literary drama and character piece that shows how the process of creating art can be seen differently by those doing it and those looking at it from the outside.
The film never slows down or bores, plunging from one harrowing sequence to the next.
This is a dark and sometimes deeply uncomfortable drama
Wow! What an incredible story. Beautiful cinematography. Will definitely be watching again. A very powerful film.
Lovers of the art that is film sometimes tend (or even wish) to play down the irreducible fact that "having a good story to tell" is part of the deal.In "Woman in Gold" from British Director Simon Curtis, the story resembles that of several family histories present in the superb genealogy documentary "Who do You Think You Are?" in that we move backwards and forwards - in just a step or two - from the world we know (Los Angeles and Vienna in the 1990s and early 2000s) to the world of a 1938 Austria in which people line the streets to welcome and cheer on Hitler's Anschluss and watch enthusiastically as poor Jews in the streets have their pigtails and beards cut off for humiliation purposes.And, while much of the Fuhrer's Berlin was pounded to rubble, in parts of Vienna you actually can go back to blocks of flats once inhabited by Jewish people the Nazis exterminated.Here a splendid Helen Mirren portrays Maria Altmann, who could also (though was in fact phobically reluctant to) go back to her childhood home in Vienna seized without mercy and never returned. At an early stage, Mirren's Altmann reminds us that 50 years is not actually that long a period...In fact, Maria's life stood out just a little from those of celebrities featured in "Who do You Think You Are?" in that she was among several members of her family to survive the Holocaust - as opposed to the typical situation of being the only one, or at least a descendant of the only one. While Jews rich and poor died, Maria's family had been very well-to-do, and her sugar-manufacturing uncle was astute and influential enough to get out of Vienna quickly. But naturally enough, he had limited capacity to take away property including the titular subject of this movie, the Gustav Klimt painting of Maria's Aunt Adele Bloch-Bauer, which the Austrian state "acquired" smoothly enough post-War (as the country began the process of portraying itself as a victim of Hitler's aggression); this work of art resembling so many others in having been stolen by the Nazis from Jews they were about to cart off and kill.Ironically, perhaps, Klimt was not a particular favourite for the Nazis, being regarded as at least semi-"degenerate". Had it been fully so the painting might have been summarily destroyed. Equally, had it been fully acceptable, it would doubtless have left Vienna for the Fatherland rapidly enough, as did several other treasures of Maria's family.And so to the main story, in which Ryan Reynolds plays lawyer Randy Schoenberg - a junior branch of a family also in Maria's circle of Austrian-Jewish escapees, and in fact a grandson of the famous Arnold - a composer unreservedly deemed "degenerate" by the Nazis, who escaped to the US as early as in 1934, only dying in LA in 1951.In the film - as in life - it is Randy's job to persuade the Austrian authorities - and above all people - that art acquired in the above way cannot in good conscience go on hanging on the walls of the Belvedere Gallery as "Austria's Mona Lisa".Sounds reasonable enough, right? Well, in fact, Maria and Randy had a 6-year legal battle on their hands which faced stubborn resistance from Austria. Revindication had only come on to the agenda at all thanks to a 1998 Act pushed for by Nazi-hunter journalist Hubertus Czernin - as superbly played in the film by Daniel Bruhl.It would be easy to imagine that a story of this kind cannot be messed up in film form, but that would be too optimistic. Many such films are indeed messed up, for example by caricature good guys and bad guys speaking English "viz a strong Jarman exent". Here authentic German is resorted to and everything looks and feels right (which in the context of the story sometimes means "very wrong"). Mirren does her job well, naturally, but her pairing with Reynolds is excellent and the development of Maria and Randy's relationship also a joy. When Bruhl joins them from time to time it just gets even better.On the whole, the film is also understated, which here is good. But it gives us a hint of the richness of the Jewish culture in old Vienna - most especially when Maria's wedding is portrayed - and this is as fascinating as it is moving and tragic, given the infinite evil soon deployed against it.In essence, then, a remarkable and important story recreated perfectly.It's a story all need to know, with an ending of victory and a hint of happiness, albeit muted - as Mirren's Altmann makes clear. But this educational process is also a great cinematic experience - a must-watch indeed.
The true story on which this movie is based is, per se, a moving plot about how bureaucratic power is exerted, having as background the dispute of a Klimt painting robbed by the Nazis during WWII and kept by an Austrian museum. Along those lines, there is a love story treated with restrained direction and editing.Plot, actors, director and all the specialized movie work is tops on this subdued (is it a good choice for American audiences?) movie available at Netflix.
About this film. I give it 0/10 This is just another propaganda film made by wealthy Jews. I have nothing against them but I am very tired to see that we mix money and holocaust. That we say rich people are better than other and have more value. That's false and just rich can people who want to be one of their think like that. Probably at least 95% of human think that, that money make human. Sorry for me it's just big lie.And then they are not the only Jews the Nazis murdered during the Second World War.All other systems (capitalist, communist, fascist, monarchy, etc.) Invented by humans do the same but more subtly. More hypocritically. Take for example the capitalist (or democracy or other pompous name of the kind). In this system that claims to be just it takes money to have justice. You can do everything, even kill, but you need money. In this system with money one has access to all unimaginable health care, all the great schools, the best food, the best housing, and so on. By cons if you have no money and well die.Of course the Capitalists do not stop making propaganda (as this film makes it to justify having paintings without knowing how they were obtained at the beginning) using their favourite toy: The Television ("The Opium of the people ").When you watch TV you get the impression that all people are rich and happy. It is only a minority. And there is not one rich man who is honest.Rich people "give" a million for a "work of charity" so as not to pay billions in taxes. Billions that go directly into tax havens. The laws are them.So it would have been interesting to know how the relatives of the film's "heroine" have become rich. Of course they will say because they worked hard, and so on. Well, most humans work hard and they are not rich.But just look at the rich today to understand the rich of the past. To look at the history that is happening before us today to understand the history of the past.And we realize that nothing has changed, that nothing will change. How many Capitalists have slaves worked in China, India and elsewhere in the "poor" countries (led by bigger dictators) and who make money as is not imaginable.And we continue to say that these rich are good, and if we ever steal one of their paintings, we will make other films to show us how sad to be rich (so to be dishonest and thieves) steal.I have no respect for the rich whoever they are, whatever their race, their religion, the countries where they live. It is only Nazis who take themselves superior to others and who do everything to have more and more money.At the end of this film is said to have sold one of the paintings 123 million. How is a work of art worth? Easy to answer: it's worth what the rich are willing to pay to get it.If I had money and I bought the painting in question 1 billion and well its artistic value would be one billion. But this will not bring back the dead and human wickedness will continue to exist as long as human existence exists. Just like lies, avarice, dishonesty, pride, narcissism, egocentricity, and so on.The rich think to do good because they control everything and it is enough to think, that we are a God, to be. And if we are rich it is true that we are gods.The intelligence is not to mix Money with Holocaust. But all is good for misers to make money.Because few humans are rich they are like God, and 99% of people agree with that. Not me. No one has more value than other. NO ONE!How many jobs can be creating with 100 million? With 1 billion? With 1 trillion? Rich don't care about that. They want money, all money to put in tax heaven waiting other money from slaves. Government don't exist. What exist is "business men "(all bandits) who "work" for their friends, all rich, or other richer and make plan to make more money.Look the actual President. And Kennedy is a God! Money is the Power and the Power is the all the Thought of Humans.Quickly the robots arrive and they eliminate us. They will be truly intelligent and will be based on logic and not on money, lies, avarice, wickedness, and so on.It is sad to see that it is enough to talk about the Holocaust and the Jews so that all films of this kind have very high score here or other website. Like what money buys even the thoughts of most peopleWhen a rich man dies, this allows many who are not rich to live better.