Maybe opera is not made for film… shit!

So says Rolando Villazón towards the end of the “Making of” documentary that accompanies Robert Dornhelm’s 2008 film of Puccini’s La Bohème.  Fortunately for us Dornhelm, Villazón and the rest of those involved provide another piece of evidence that films of operas can indeed be made, and made very successfully.  This one is a curious hybrid.  It uses just about every technique that I’ve seen used in such a venture.  The whole thing was originally recorded in the studio and most of the film is lip-synched using a mixture of the singers and actors who weren’t art of the singing cast but some of the arias were sung on set to a taped orchestral track.  I’m not sure why and I couldn’t tell which was what.  It all works pretty well anyway.

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