The Loves of Liszt

Film
A film with all the grace of a dinosaur and the liveliness of a dodo. For two and a half hours (mercifully, 32 minutes were cut for British release) we're treated to a childishly reverential biography that outdoes even Hollywood biopics in its horde of clichés and name-dropping. The settings, both interior and exterior, are attractive in their holiday-brochure way, yet they are never treated with any imagination (the director's main trick is to make the camera pirouette round the piano during Liszt's recitals, which only makes it seem as though he's performing on ice). And while the dollops of music are finely performed (mostly by György Cziffra and Sviatoslav Richter), the selection signally fails to support the script's claim that Liszt is a key figure in the development of modern music.

By: GB

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