- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 1 hours, 49 minutes
- Video: Black & White / Color
- Released: May 4, 2010
- Originally Released: 1999
- Label: United States Dist
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Aspect Ratio: Widescreen
- Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo - English
- Subtitles - English, French, German, Spanish
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Description by OLDIES.com:
In 1945, the new Polish Government asked for the heart of Chopin, who was previously buried in Paris. A woman named Paulina Czernika approached the Polish Government claiming to have some love letters from the composer to her great-grandmother, the Countess Delfina Potocka, the only woman to whom Chopin had dedicated any music. The Ministry began a witch-hunt against Madame Czernika. These letters were said to be pornographic, anti-Semitic and thoroughly damaging to the image of the composer as a Polish hero. Czernika supposedly committed suicide on October 17th 1949, 100 years to the day after the death of Chopin. Or was she murdered, and if so, why? Were the letters in fact forgeries? And what was the truth about Delfina Potocka?
Tony Palmer?s dramatized film tells the story of Czernika Potocka, probing a veritable mystery in a series of parallel scenes from 1945 and 1845. New light is shed on Chopin himself, not the least in the interpretation of the music brought to life by the beautiful young Russian pianist, Valentina Igoshina.
In this unusual period drama from 1999, classical music expert and filmmaker Tony Palmer delves into the final years of Polish-born Romantic composer Frédéric François Chopin to unearth a compelling and tragic love story that developed between Chopin and Delfina Potocka, a Polish countess who served as the great musician's muse. Chopin and Potocka's voluminous exchanged correspondence radiated passion, but Palmer argues that their relationship created sad ripple effects years into the future, including the mysterious death (and possible suicide) of Potocka's granddaughter, Paulina Czerina. She apparently knew of Chopin's almost obsessive interest in her grandmother from her own possession of the letters, and found this knowledge too difficult to bear. In lieu of merely quoting or excerpting the letters, Palmer works the events referenced in them into individual scenes and uses those scenes to draw events from the last few years of Chopin's life.