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16th Jecheon International Music & Film Festival

Copying Beethoven
UK/Hungary | 2006 | 104min | 35mm | COLOR | Drama | Musical


Copying Beethoven, a new film by Polish cineaste Agnieszka Holland well known for the acclaimed films , and , takes a unique look at Beethoven’s last days through the fictional character of Anna Holtz, a copyist for Beethoven’s scores. In the heart of musical Vienna, 23 year old aspiring composer Anna pursues her ambitions despite all the obstacles. One day, she seizes the opportunity to assist the mythic and intimidating Beethoven. Unsure of her potential, Beethoven devises an impromptu test for her, which she passes with flying colors. This unusual encounter will result in big changes in both lives. Unlike other films depicting Beethoven, a popular cinematic subject due to his eccentricities and hearing loss, focuses on Beethoven as a human being. While the last few years of his life were plagued by his troublesome family, the disastrous hearing loss, and increasing alienation from his peers, ironically Beethoven composed his greatest masterpieces during the same period. Classical music lovers will be delighted with the avant-garde opening of Beethoven’s String Quartet Grosse Fuge in B Flat Major Op.134, and thrill to the debut of Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 in D minor, Op.125, the greatest symphony ever in music history. Ed Harris as Beethoven delivers heartfelt performance as does Diane Kruger in her star turn as Anna. Drawing from a profound understanding of Beethoven and his music, Holland exhibits stunning delicacy in her fine directing, enriching the story by placing Anna between Beethoven and her architect lover.

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Agnieszka Holland

Agnieszka Holland was born in Warsaw but went to Czechoslovakia to study film directing at FAMU in Prague. She began her film career working in Poland with Krzysztof Zanussi as assistant director, and Andrzej Wajda as her mentor. Since directing her won films, her works soon won awards at festivals and gained notoriety as part of the Polish New Wave. Among her notable films are: (1985), (1990), (1992), (1993), (1995), (1997), (1999) and (2002).

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