Movieline's Hollywood Life - 12/01/2003
"...It's a tour de force of editing and cinematography..."
Premiere - 12/01/2003
"...Altman's most amiable picture in years..."
Los Angeles Times - 12/24/2003
"With his shimmering THE COMPANY Robert Altman draws on his mastery of effortless-looking storytelling to celebrate the transcendent glories of the ballet."
Entertainment Weekly - 01/16/2004
"McDowell is a pleasure to watch, but the key to THE COMPANY is the quiet, focused rapture of Neve Campbell."
Chicago Sun-Times - 12/24/2003
"[Campbell] plays the role with complete knowledge of Ry, and her dancing is always convincing."
Rolling Stone - 02/05/2004
"Altman turns THE COMPANY into a celebration of spirit, showing the gargantuan effort of many people to create an art that seems lighter than air."
With THE COMPANY, maverick director Robert Altman brings his idiosyncratic vision to Chicago and the acclaimed Joffrey Ballet. Neve Campbell is Ry, an aspiring performer who gets her chance to shine when a fellow dancer is injured. Stepping into the spotlight, Ry finally reaches her true potential, impressing the company's artistic director Alberto Antonelli (Malcolm McDowell). As the company prepares for their performance of "Blue Snake," Ry finds herself falling in love with the good-natured, handsome chef Josh (James Franco). Meanwhile, backstage dramas continue to develop at an exhausting pace. Having studied ballet with the National Ballet of Canada, Campbell easily glides into her role, performing all of her own dance routines with the skill of a true professional.
Well known for his conscious debunking of myths and genres, Altman truly lets himself go this time around, delivering a jarringly understated film that is more documentary than drama. Cinematographer Andrew Dunne elegantly captures the many performance scenes on sweeping digital video. Adding even more beauty to the proceedings is the film's robust soundtrack, which features music from Van Dyke Parks, Julee Cruise, as well as several variations on the classic song "Funny Valentine" (Elvis Costello, Chet Baker, Marvin Laird, and Kronos Quartet).
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