Renowned illusionists and professional debunkers Penn & Teller unite for this documentary investigation into the mysterious methods of Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer, whose photo-realistic paintings predated the invention of the camera by 150 years.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
Those faulting the film's length or indulgent attention to process have perhaps never experienced the revelations and frustrations that arise from long hours hovering over a canvas. Every brush stroke, every mistake that is corrected or ignored, every blended pigment is a revealing choice that shapes the outcome. Both Vermeer's and Jenison's choices are inspired, which makes for riveting viewing.
A fascinating story trying to solve a mystery that can never be substantiated. Tim is a fascinating subject in that his perserverance through a job that must have been beyond mundane is admirable and somewhat awe inducing. The filmmaking leaves a lot to be desired and its brevity is in its favour. One of the more interesting films in its mini-genre of late and doesn't take away from Vermeer's genius.
There's something inherently fascinating about a non-artist attempting to discover and recreate the method behind Johannes Vermeer's strikingly photorealistic paintings, but Penn and Teller's new documentary, TIM'S VERMEER lacks the gravity to really pull it off. It focuses too much on the details of the experiment rather than the questions it raises about technology vs. art- questions that it raises all too casually
Enthralling enough to keep you going, this poorly-shot documentary should spend less time admiring the seemingly never-ending abilities of its subject, but it does provide for some fascinating observations on art and science as two irrevocably close areas of expertise.
I’ve met Penn & Teller a couple times during my past work for Skeptic magazine, and must admit I thought they were jerks (and not all that smart)! But then I caught their magic show and was truly blown away by their craft and genius there. This film (directed by Teller) is also truly excellent. Fun, casual, and ends up very smartly exploring art vs the art of technology, as well as innovation through play.
I found the film to rather be an argument FOR Vermeer’s genius. The meticulousness of painting such intricate details... and it only takes a side by side comparison to see the difference between the artist and the inventor.But, nevertheless, the film is extremely entertaining and surprisingly profound. You see how the seemingly indifferent scientist gets absorbed into the obsession that is art!
Beyond Vermeer being an artist or a technologist, the interest of the doc relies on 'the process' and its sometimes tedious details to make it through... - this is how *far* an engineer can go to prove his theory