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Posted June. 22, 2006 03:06,   


Recently, Austrian painter Gustav Klimt’s (1862-1918) masterpiece “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer” sold for $135 million, the highest price ever for a painting, breaking the previous record of a Picasso. Klimt is one of the most duplicated artists worldwide. His paintings, which are loved worldwide, are schemed with erotic fantasies, and express a freedom that transcend time and place.

“Klimt,” which will be released on June 29, is a film co-produced by his homeland Austria after three years of preparation with German, French, and British productions. Klimt, who has brought forward brilliant and decorative paintings like ‘The Kiss,’ ‘Judith,’ and ‘Danae’, is shown not in a biographical format. Instead, the movie goes inside his memories and visions to look inside him.

Klimt (John Malkovich), lying on a hospital bed ridden with the pox, is at the brink of death. His mind is fuddled and he even confuses fantasy and memory. The stage is set in the nineteenth century, an age filled with restlessness and gusto created from the turn of the century. Director Raoul Ruiz leads the story around the women Klimt loved, by showing images of Klimt’s paintings, and the art nouveau style popular in Wien in those days. The weak point would be that it is boring for someone familiar with storytelling. Rate not decided.

Mun-Myung Huh angelhuh@donga.com