Furious, violently bombastic, terribly unsettling, Ken Russell's 1970 biography of Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (Richard Chamberlain) is a portrait of artistic brilliance beset by the Russian composer's mounting guilt over, well, everything: his homosexuality, his marriage to the increasingly miserable and mad Nina (Glenda Jackson), his hidden attraction to Count Anton Chiluvsky (Christopher Gable), and his suggestively incestuous relations with a sister while growing up. Consumed by his art to the point of explosiveness, Tchaikovsky has increasing difficulty coping with his life, finding some solace in the distant love proffered by his rich patroness (who refuses to meet him but communicates her feelings through letters). Russell intends the film to be a bumpy and harsh ride that descends into grotesque tragedy as Nina is confined to a monstrous asylum and Tchaikovsky becomes ill. Still, there are a few of the usual pop-surreal sequences of which the director is so fond, most memorably a loony visual accompaniment for the 1812 Overture. --Tom Keogh
Top Customer Reviews
This dvd retains the beautiful colour and sets that I remember. Richard Chamberlain and Glenda Jackson project their characters brilliantly and the other cast members work well together. I would have given five stars but was disappointed at the lack of subtitles or closed captioning. A short program giving some background would also have enhanced this dvd.
Russell was instrumental, along with directors like Lindsay Anderson and Nic Roeg,in giving British cinema its own more subtle version of 'nouvelle vague' in the early 70s.
His great passion for literature and classical music was a constant source of inspiration,from his adaptation of D.H Lawrence's 'Women in Love' his most acclaimed film to date, to his biographies of Elgar,Liszt, Mahler and Tchaikovsky.
The British film establishment along with almost all critics liked nothing better than to dismiss Russell and his films as pompous and over indulgent.Micheal Winner has always had his share of these snide reviews and remarks, but although he is a remarkable socialite and bon vivant, his direction talents can not be compared to Russell's at all ,thus making the cold shoulder the latter received totally unjustified.
Music Lovers, was one of the first films I ever saw, and it was largely responsible for two main developments in my life,
my love and appreciation of classical music on one hand, and a passion for cinema that remains as strong and vibrant to this day on the other.
It is a biography of this greatest of composers,Tchaikovsky, like nothing you are likely to see..Amadeus was majestic and grand..Beethoven's Immortal Beloved was too polished...Russell in Music Lovers gives us a biography that is troubled, anxious, raw and unashamedly personal.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
One of the best movies ever, the genius of Tchaikovsky combined with Ken Russell.Published 12 months ago by Arpad Kiss
I still have not received the 2 products after 4 weeks ordering
Please into this for me as soon as possible.
When is this little gem* going to come out on DVD ?
*for the squared minant.
I must say this is about the best movie I saw that I never knew that it existed. The whole thing is a masterpeice from beginning to end. Read morePublished on March 11 2003 by Frank Solowczuk
The movie it self is not that bad, but the person they portrait is not P.I Tchaikovsky. I've read biographies, diary, and letters of Tchaikovsky, the way the main character... Read morePublished on Feb. 26 2003 by cg art
An average rating of just 3 stars for Ken Russell's cinematic masterpiece? Scandalous! From beginning to end, this film is an extravaganza of visual delights and narrative verve,... Read morePublished on July 25 2001