Local production company Amour Fou has made a film of the “chamber opera play” in which John Malkovich reprises the stage role.
Described as “Mozart meets Malkovich meets Casanova” by Luxembourg-Austrian production company Amour Fou, “The Casanova Variations” is hybrid of film, theatre and opera. It is based on “The Giacomo Variations”, the chamber opera play that toured the world in 2013--including a performance at the Philharmonie in Luxembourg.
The film has received mixed reviews. Directed by Michael Sturminger, who wrote the theatre piece, it is packed with literary and operatic references, and even allows itself a generous portion of post-modernism as the star gives a sly nod to his role as Valmont in Stephen Frears’s “Dangerous Liasons”.
Malkovich plays opposite German actress Veronica Ferres as Elisa von der Recke, who wants to publish Casanova’s memoirs. Fanny Ardant and Victória Guerra also appear. Arias from “Cosi fan tutte,” “The Marriage of Figaro” and “Don Giovanni” are included--though they are sung by opera stars Florian Boesch and Miah Persson, Jonas Kaufmann and Anna Prohaska.
It all looks rather splendid and slightly sexy in the trailer, but we can well believe the Variety critic Jay Weissberg who says the film suffers from its “forced charm.”
Ciné Utopia, ave du Faïencerie, Luxembourg-Limpertsberg
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Action, US, 108 min
Cast: Zachary Quinto, Ciarán Hinds, Rupert Friend
Director(s): Aleksander Bach