i hated this film when i first saw it. much like i hated "i shot andy warhol", the film itself is very good, but the subject is loathsome.
pollock is based on jackson pollock's life as an artist. from an unknown typical abstract painter, to a genre creating action painter, to the most famous painter of his era this film acts as a bio-drama portrait. its also a look into the work and life of lee krasner, his wife.
pollock is a struggling artist. lee krasner is shown here, pushing him to go further and promoting his work and getting it to show and sell. their relationship is central to the story as it was to his life.
pollock was one of those guys who thought that drinking helped them be creative. krasner recognized he was a train wreck when drunk and didn't get anything done. when they relocate and she's able to keep him clean, is when he flourishs. but alas, in the end he's cheating on her and getting drunk again until she finally leaves him and he spirals down to his inevitable drunken car crash end.
so what do you get from the film? sexist drunk gets famous largely from the work/support of the woman behind him. and eventually succumbs to his habits of being a sexist drunk until it kills him. along the way we get a dubious rendition of how he came to his "action painting" and his dislike of having to make the film that was actually recorded of him painting in real life.
the film did well and most people like it. it should be recommended. but i simply don't like the people/subjects in the film. pollock is crude, krasner is harsh and largely unlikeable, and other notables are peripheral or not especially redeeming.
i'm sure i'll watch the film again. i just can't like the people.