Brush with Fate (2003) 1080p

Movie Poster
Brush with Fate (2003) 1080p - Movie Poster
Frame Rate:
23.976 fps
English 2.0  
Run Time:
100 min
IMDB Rating:
6.2 / 10 
Add Date:

Directors: Brent Shields [Director] ,

Movie Description:
The story of a painting as it moves from owner to owner through the centuries.


  • Brush with Fate (2003) 1080p - Movie Scene 1
  • Brush with Fate (2003) 1080p - Movie Scene 2
  • Brush with Fate (2003) 1080p - Movie Scene 1

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Melodrama, interesting structure

I checked this out because of the cover. IN the opening scenes, Glenn Close acts so well I sat through the rest of the film, even though she did only the intro and the outro. Her eccentric, somewhat blind old academic was a stereotype, but I won't discuss it further because it would turn into a spoiler. Suffice to say, much of the movie that came after went a little over the top, full of exaggerated conflicts and exaggerated emotions. The interesting part of the film is the structure. It's an ass-backward way to doing history. I imagine Close's character, who narrates the stories to her colleague, opened one can of worms in her investigation only to raise a question about an earlier time, and so on, and that's how she tells the story. A little confusing at first, but when I figured it out, I spent time after making the connections.. That's how it runs, and in that way, it's interesting.

Following the Trail of a Lost Vermeer

This is a fascinating film by Brent Shields which, although made for television, was largely shot on location in the Netherlands and must have had a substantial budget for a TV movie. The production values are very high, with excellent sets and costumes and wonderful old Dutch buildings used to great effect. The film has two spectacular performances, one by the amazing Glen Close, as you have never seen her before, and the other by the brilliant young British actress Kelly Macdonald, who was such a strong presence in the British TV series 'State of Play' and in various films since. There are many other fine performances as well, a number of them by Dutch actors unknown to those of us who do not wear clogs, eat pea soup, and pronounce strange vowels. The story is based upon the imagined existence of a lost Vermeer, which for the film was specially painted by a Dutch artist named Jonathan Janson, who succeeded admirably in imitating a Vermeer. The painting is of a girl wrapped in a cloak of hyacinth blue and sitting in the usual Vermeer room by window light. The film investigates the history of the painting through the centuries, in the manner of the famous film which follows the history of a violin, 'The Red Violin'. 'Brush with Fate' is rather a weak title, and must have depressed the DVD sales a lot. This film is really very charming and entrancing in many respects. There are some amazing twists in the story, which is a series of strange tales going back further and further in time until we discover who the girl was in the painting and have a lot of Vermeer himself in the story. The 'topper' in terms of plot twists is the extraordinary revelation at the ending. Anyone willing to sit through a film in which no one gets killed by machine guns, in which helicopters do not crash through skyscraper windows, in which people are not always pulling their clothes off so that the director can get excited, and who have some interest in art, would find this film interesting. It is also a very wonderful glimpse of the Netherlands of the past, and we see much more of it here than we do in 'Girl with the Pearl Earring'. Also, the film should be treasured as one of Glen Close's most bizarre roles, which she pulls off with true genius, and hence is a gem for those serious about great acting. As for Kelly Macdonald, she acts circles round everybody but Glen Close, and shows such fire and character that she sets the screen alight.

Please, no brush off

Brr, the reviews for this Hallmark Hall of Famer have been considerably chilly. Too bad people can't warm up to the idea of an original movie (though based on a book) that moves slowly in its presentation and theme. Brush with Fate is fascinating. The storyline of tracing backwards to the actual setting of a painting done by a master is quite riveting. It doesn't matter that Glenn Close has a relatively small role. It was all that was needed.

The stories take place mainly in Holland, and the time periods used are colorful, and refreshing. The whole idea of "What if this really happened?" seems plausible by the end of the movie.

Even if the painting is not real, the one created in the movie is captivating in execution. If you love art, enjoy speculative storytelling, and favor Glenn Close, then do check this movie out to form your own opinion.
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