Some Kind of Love (image 1)

This notion that art is a licence to behave in any kind of way is peculiar. I don’t know where it comes from.

Joseph Sonnabend

Screened as part of NZIFF 2015

Some Kind of Love 2014

Directed by Thomas Burstyn

Acclaimed London artist and designer Yolanda Sonnabend is obliged to share the grand family home she’s made so flamboyantly her own with her scientist brother in this new doco from This Way of Life director Thomas Burstyn.

Canada In English
78 minutes DCP

Director, Photography

Producers

B. Sumner Burstyn
,
Trish Dolman

Screenplay

Thomas Burstyn
,
B. Sumner Burstyn

Editor

Peter Roeck

Music

John Korsrud

With

Yolanda Sonnabend
,
Joseph Sonnabend

Festivals

Vancouver 2014

Elsewhere

Yolanda Sonnabend has been a well-known portrait painter and stellar designer for Britain’s Royal Ballet. Ballet aside, the work of art most enticingly displayed in this documentary is her home, the last un-renovated house in an ultra-expensive London suburb, which she has arrayed like an enchanted gallery with a lifetime’s collection of paintings and found objects. As she’s in the early stages of dementia, her long estranged older brother, Dr Joseph Sonnabend, a hero of AIDS research, has moved in to take care of her. The man of science could not be less enchanted by Yolanda or her chaos, and there’s more than a hint of Grey Gardens about their bravura carping and Yolanda’s grandeur under siege.

Their step-nephew Thomas Burstyn, director of a very different family portrait in This Way of Life, filmed them on several visits over a number of years. He interweaves Yolanda and Joseph’s past and present with qualms about his own current family responsibilities. And thanks to Joseph’s point-blank denunciations of the ethical laxness of both the portrait artists lurking under his roof, he is prompted to own up to his responsibilities as a filmmaker too.