In this fascinating and unconventional examination of the creative process, an artist near the end of his career finds new inspiration in a young model. Edouard Frenhofer (Michel Piccoli) is a famous and well-respected artist who lives in a comfortable estate in the French countryside. At the age of 60, Frenhofer considers his career as a painter to be over; he says he no longer feels any inspiration to create, and his last attempt at a major work, a nude study of his wife Liz (Jane Birkin) called "La Belle Noiseuse" (The Beautiful Nuisance), has sat unfinished for ten years. Just as Frenhofer has lost his enthusiasm for his art, he has also lost his passion for Liz; their relationship is polite and friendly, but without enthusiasm. When Frenhofer tells Nicolas (David Bursztein), his young protege, that he no longer feels the desire to paint, Nicolas suggests that he needs a more inspiring subject, and he offers his girlfriend Marianne (Emmanuelle Beart) as a model. Frenhofer is taken with Marianne's beauty, and, with Liz's cool approval, he and Marianne spend several arduous sessions together, exchanging ideas and opinions as Frenhofer methodically attempts to create a final masterpiece.
"Jeffrey Watts is an artist who has been steadily building both a reputation as an outstanding painter and draftsman of this generation as well as a consummate teacher and instructor of fine art principles. In his Watts Atelier, he trains a new generation of painters in the drawing and painting procedures that have almost become a lost art.
One of China's biggest pop stars of the late 20th century, Sandy Lam rose to fame in the 1980s as a Cantopop singer before expanding her fan base significantly in the 1990s with stylistically diverse albums in Mandarin, Japanese, and English.
The late Doc Pomus was one of the top songwriters in the R&B/blues tradition while Johnny Adams was one of his favorite singers; their eventual matchup was quite logical. Pomus wrote a few new songs and worked with Adams on planning this Rounder CD up until his own death.
Kenny Barron has been a respected jazz pianist since the early '60s, but it wasn't until the mid-'70s that he began coming into his own as a composer; deftly working complex time signatures and mercurial melodies into seamlessly swinging numbers, agile sambas, and lovely ballads. Fifteen years on, Invitation finds Barron in full maturity as a writer and in the sympathetic company of tenor saxophonist Ralph Moore, bassist David Williams, and drummer Lewis Nash. Barron's democratic pen runs the gamut here as he distills Monk's angular jubilance on "And Then Again," produces one of his most beautiful ballads in "Dewdrop," and works a fine bossa nova groove on "Joanne Julia"…