En 1665, à Delft, la jeune Griet est engagée au service du renommé peintre et de sa famille. Mais bientôt entre la servante et lartiste se développera une attirance certaine qui se matérialisera sous la forme dun tableau.
Explorant adroitement les liens unissant cinéma et peinture, et grâce à une réalisation gracieuse et délicate, Webber réussit le tour de force esthétique de faire ressembler chacun de ses plans à des toiles du maître hollandais. La lumière et les couleurs si caractéristiques de son œuvre prennent littéralement vie dans ce film aux jolis effets de mise en scène. Des acteurs en grande forme, notamment Colin Firth et Scarlett Johansson dont les interprétations subtiles et nuancées servent parfaitement les personnages principaux, offrent des performances dune intensité remarquable, soutenant ce film à la beauté plastique indéniable. Malgré une fin abruptement amenée, Girl with a Pearl Earring est un film sobre, calme et lumineux. Helen Faradji
Not much is known about the Dutch master, who lived and worked in 17th century Delft. Only 35 of his paintings survive. Among these works, perhaps his greatest, is the portrait, "Girl With A Pearl Earring." Director Webber has transformed Tracy Chevalier's novel, of the same name, into this extraordinary movie for the big screen.
Scarlett Johansson is superb as the young servant girl, Griet, who is sent to the Vermeer household to work after her father has an incapacitating accident. The labor is pure drudgery and seemingly endless, with little pay and fewer thanks. Since the Vermeers are dependent on wealthy patrons to commission paintings, money is tight and Vermeer's young wife is pregnant almost every year. Griet's work is made more difficult by jealous coworkers, the brood of spoiled Vermeer children, the suspicious wife and her manipulating mother, (Essie Davis), who holds the purse strings tightly.
Griet's unusual intelligence begins to show, as does her curiosity and sensitivity. She is fascinated by Vermeer's work and the world of light and color. She wonders, at one point, whether to wash the murky studio windows and risk losing the precious quality of muted light. This is not just an ordinary maid. She has a quality of stillness and purity about her which attracts Vermeer, (Colin Firth is wonderful as the brooding artist), as well as his super rich, lecherous patron, (Tom Wilkinson). Eventually, Griet is pressured to sit for a portrait, which will, centuries later, be marveled at.
The production design and period settings are award-worthy. Olivia Hetreed's screenplay is excellent. She places as much emphasis on silence as she does on dialogue and the result is extremely effective. And the cast is exceptional. Johansson's and Firth's performances are nuanced and subtle.
Vermeer is one of my favorite artists and I have traveled far to see his available work. I watched "Girl With A Pearl Earring" twice in as many days. It is a wonderful movie and an extraordinary visual experience. A must see!