The beautiful love story between Leonard Cohen and his Norwegian muse Marianne Ihlen.
Marianne & Leonard - Words of Love is a beautiful yet tragic love story between Leonard Cohen and his Norwegian muse Marianne Ihlen. Their love began on the idyllic Greek island of Hydra in 1960 as part of a bohemian community of foreign artists, writers and musicians. The film follows their relationship from the early days on Hydra, a humble time of ‘free love’ and open marriage, to how their love evolved when Leonard became a successful musician. It was on Hydra in 1968 that director Nick Broomfield, then aged 20, first met Marianne Ihlen. Marianne introduced him to Leonard Cohen’s music and also encouraged Nick to make his first film and was an enormous influence on him. Marianne and Leonard's was a love story that would continue for the rest of their lives. Along the way we learn of the tragedy that befell those that could not survive the beauty of Hydra, the highs and lows of Leonard’s career, and the inspirational power that Marianne possessed. Marianne and Leonard died three months apart.
Nick Broomfield studied Law at Cardiff, and Political Science at Essex University. He then went on to study Film at the National Film School, under Professor Colin Young Broomfield first discovered his love for photography at age 15 on a foreign exchange visit in France. "A great way to strike up conversations, and a great excuse to ask questions about the world around you." While at University, he made his first film, WHO CARES (about Slum Clearance in Liverpool), by borrowing a wind up Bolex camera and shooting it on short ends. Professor Colin Young at the NFS had a great influence on his work encouraging participant observation, as well as introducing him to the lovely and most talented Joan Churchill. Together Joan and Nick made several films - JUVENILE LIAISON, TATTOOED TEARS, SOLDIER GIRLS, LILY TOMLIN and more recently, AILEEN: LIFE AND DEATH OF A SERIAL KILLER. Joan and Nick also have a son together. Nick was originally influenced by the observational style of Fred Wiseman, Robert Leacock and D.A. Pennebaker, before moving on - largely by accident - to the more idiosyncratic style for which he is better known. While making DRIVING ME CRAZY in 1988, a film hopelessly out of control, Nick decided to place himself and the producer in the story, as a way of making sense of the event. This experiment led to a sense of greater freedom, from the confines of observational cinema, and led to a more investigative and experimental type of filmmaking as seen in THE LEADER THE DRIVER, AILEEN WUORNOS, KURT AND COURTNEY, and BIGGIE AND TUPAC. Broomfield is the recipient of the following prestigious awards, amongst others: Sundance first prize, British Academy Award, Prix Italia, Dupont Peabody Award, Grierson Award, Hague Peace Prize, Amnesty International Doen award.
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