Starring: Willem Dafoe, Rupert Friend, Oscar Isaac, Mads Mikkelsen, Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seigner, Niels Arestrup
Bio-drama directed and co-written by Julian Schnabel, following Vincent Van Gogh’s (Willem Dafoe) time in Arles and his final days. This is a journey inside the world and mind of a person who, despite skepticism, ridicule and illness, created some of the world’s most beloved and stunning works of art.
The Priest: Tell me, why do you say you’re a painter?
Vincent Van Gogh: Because I love painting, I have to paint. I’ve always been a painter. That I know.
The Priest: A born painter.
Vincent Van Gogh: Yes.
The Priest: How do you know?
Vincent Van Gogh: Because I can’t do anything else, and believe me, I’ve tried.
The Priest: [to Van Gogh] Don’t you see that this painting is unpleasant? The town’s people have signed a petition against you. They don’t want you to come back.
Vincent Van Gogh: [to the priest] Sometimes I feel so far away from everything. I think I’m losing my mind.
The Priest: Do you believe that God gave you the gift of painting to keep you in misery?
Vincent Van Gogh: I never thought about it that way.
Vincent Van Gogh: Maybe God made me a painter for people who aren’t born yet.
Vincent Van Gogh: I think of myself as an exile.
Vincent Van Gogh: Tell me, brother, am I a good painter?
Theo Van Gogh: You’re not a good painter, Vincent, you’re a great painter.
Paul Gauguin: You’re Vincent.
Vincent Van Gogh: Yes, Theo’s brother.
Paul Gauguin: I’m Paul Gauguin.
Paul Gauguin: [to Van Gogh] We have to start a revolution, do you understand?
Paul Gauguin: [to Van Gogh] We have to create a new vision, a new way of painting.
Vincent Van Gogh: I spent all my life alone in a room. I’d like to find a new light for paintings that we haven’t yet seen.
Vincent Van Gogh: There’s something inside me, I don’t know what it is. What I see nobody else sees.
Albert Aurier: [to Van Gogh] You’re a stranger here. You drink too much. You’re hysterical and out of control.
Vincent Van Gogh: I don’t want to calm down. It’s called reactive painting for a reason!
Paul Gauguin: I can’t stay here, Vincent. You’re surrounded by stupid, wicked, ignorant people.
Albert Aurier: So that’s the reason you cut off your ear. Your vision of the world is quite frightening, isn’t it?
Vincent Van Gogh: Yes.
Vincent Van Gogh: Sometimes I say I’m mad, but a grain of madness is the best of art.
Vincent Van Gogh: I wanted so much to share what I see. Now I just think about my relationship to eternity.
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