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Critic's Pick

'Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould'

June 04, 1995|Kenneth Turan

Everything that is distinctive and irresistible about this 1993 film comes through right from the start. A consummate musician who shocked the concert world by abandoning performance for recordings when he was only 32, the late Gould was too original a figure to fit into a conventional film bio. And Canadian director Francois Girard, who co-wrote the screenplay with Don McKellar, has not attempted to give him one. Instead, they've assembled a portrait of Gould as if it were a mosaic, combining unrelated facets of his life, personality and career. That there are 32 of these is a nod to Bach's Goldberg Variations, Gould's debut recording and music behind the film's opening scene. Finally, the film would be difficult to imagine without Colm Feore (pictured), who manages to make Gould seem simultaneously self-assured and erratic (Cinemax Wednesday at 8 p.m.).

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