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  • Colin Fraser


THREE STARS A light hearted account of artist Alberto Giacometti and his portrait of a friend.

Starring Geoffrey Rush and Armie Hammer


Acclaimed character actor Stanley Tucci (THE HUNGER GAMES’ Caeser Flickerman) goes behind the camera to direct this charming portrait of acclaimed modern artist Alberto Giacometti (Rush) - he of the skinny, twisted, elongated human sculptures. It’s late in the man’s career and an American collector and friend (Hammer) agrees to pose for a portrait. Tucci slowly turns the camera away from the artist’s subject to paint a portrait of the artist himself: a simple yet effective device that illuminates both the process and the frustration borne by all participants. Giacometti is the epitome of self-doubt as his painting goes through many, many, many iterations. His involvement with a local prostitute doesn’t help, although suffering subject and long-suffering wife do find common space to air their grievances.

FINAL PORTRAIT is a modest piece but one that allows Rush to (ahem) shine in the role, as he offers up one of his best performances in years. There’s a wonderful balance of humour, pathos, virility, anger and regret that makes Giacometti both fascinating and exhausting. Rush is well served by Tucci, Hammer and fellow co-stars who each bring a lightness to their roles that support, without overwhelming, the main attraction. Although there’s a sense that there was enough material to turn this into an ‘inspired by’ ‘true story’ Oscar baiting ‘epic’, Tucci chose to create something more akin to a stage play – something much smaller yet more involving because of it. Despite a few narrative bumps, FINAL PORTRAIT is a portrait worth watching.

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