American artist Jackson Pollock was an alcoholic, manic-depressant and often an uncontrollable, angry and insecure man. However, when he painted, he found a sense of freedom and peace, a release from his anger and sadness.
The movie “Pollock ”is, in essence, Ed Harris’ labor of love. He bought the rights to the book a decade ago and ended up producing, directing and starring in the film. The film isn’t about art, nor does it try to portray an artist who was a madman and a genius; it is about giving us insight into the way art affected the artist.
The movie follows the latter years of Pollock’s life –we see him rise to fame as a painter and we watch him struggle with life as his alcoholism, ego and violent nature wear him down slowly. Standing by him and often taking care of him is Lee Krasner (Marcia Gay Harden), who was also a painter and ended up becoming Pollock’s lover, wife, and biggest supporter. Well aware of Pollock’s conflicts, Krasner often put aside her own needs and aspirations. She recognized his talent and brilliance as an artist and wanted to see him succeed, forfeiting her own career. She balanced his erratic nature by being a strong supporter at his side.
The movie Pollock” is a wonderful film that showcases an artist whose brilliant talent and erratic behavior paradoxically gained him fame and cost him his demise. Harris and Harden are superb in their roles.