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The silent epic and international cinema legend Abel Gance is most celebrated for his sweeping and pioneering biography masterpiece "Napoleon" and his anti-war classic "J'accuse." But this touching and tortured document of the legendary Beethoven's creative genius deserves equal tribute and attention. Like "Napoleon," "Beethoven" is Gance's portrait of a great mind, a giant of history, here crafted as a romantic vision of the artist. The film chronicles the years of Beethoven's greatest successes and his struggles against overwhelming adversity--poverty, the onset of deafness and his unrequited passion for his "Immortal Beloved." Writer/director Gance conducts a symphony of images set to an expressionistic score, depicting not only the events but the spirit of the composer's life. The passion and torment... the triumphs and downfall... the heart and mind of a legend.
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