Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Electrical Life Of Louis Wain - What We Know So Far

A cat can be just as mysterious as it is cute. Artist Louis Wain, whose paintings and drawings brought their unique mystique to Victorian-era London, knew that. "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" follows the real-life artist's adulthood, telling a compelling story filled with drama, comedy, and heart that's not only about one man's journey but also the feline inspirations he discovered along the way.

Director Will Sharpe brings his unique vision to the prestigious project. Previously known for his work on the hit BBC series, "Flowers," Sharpe delves into the heart of Wain's personal life with a sense of quirkiness that resembles the artist's distinctive work. Even more impressively, the film manages to highlight Wain's paintings while also touching on sensitive topics and issues that the artist dealt with throughout his life. Although, in its review of the film, IndieWire notes that Sharpe and co. seem "less concerned with the uncertain details of its subject's mental health than with the warmth and whimsy he brought to the world."

Ahead of the film's upcoming digital premiere, here's everything you need to know about "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain."

What is The Electrical Life of Louis Wain's release date?

"The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" hit limited theaters in the United States on October 22. International fans still have to wait a bit to see the film, with a 2022 release date currently planned for it (via Deadline). The film is also set to arrive on Amazon Prime on November 5. All Prime subscribers will have access to the title for no additional fee.

The film's theatrical premiere came after it made a string of appearances at film festivals earlier this year. For instance, it had its world premiere at the 2021 Telluride Film Festival and subsequently went on to screen at the Toronto International Film Festival and other events. It's not hard to see why the film managed to secure spots at such prestigious events either. After all, in addition to its unique premise and real-life subject, the film's lead stars are two very well-known actors — one of whom is having an especially busy year right now.

Who is in the cast of The Electrical Life of Louis Wain?

Benedict Cumberbatch leads the cast of "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" as its titular character. Notably, 2021 has been a busy year for the actor, with "The Power of the Dog" also winning rave reviews at many fall film festivals (via Rotten Tomatoes). Much like he did for his role in "The Power of the Dog" as well, Cumberbatch took the time to delve into Louis Wain's life and various habits. Between takes, he was even eager to continue refining his performance as the character. "I'd start copying his drawing. Or trying to do stuff blind, or trying to do stuff with two hands," the actor told The Hollywood Reporter in September.

Cumberbatch is joined in the film by a number of other talented performers. "The Crown" star Claire Foy, for instance, plays the role of Wain's wife, Emily. Her presence in the artist's life is crucial to him further developing his talents as well as his viewpoints on love. Director Will Sharpe also called on several performers he worked with on "Flowers" to participate in the film, including Olivia Colman, who serves as its narrator.

Outside of those actors, "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" also stars Andrea Riseborough and Toby Jones.

What's the plot of The Electrical Life of Louis Wain?

The talent involved in "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" all came together to tell — as its title suggests — the story of Louis Wain. The film follows the artist both as he rises to prominence for his eccentric cat paintings and — after a governess comes into his family's life — falls in love. Along the way, viewers get to experience what it was like to be a person who thought, as Wain did, outside Victorian society's norms.

However, painting and art represent just one aspect of the artist's creativity. As a result, "The Electrical Life of Louis Wain" follows its titular figure through several of his various endeavors and pursuits — some of which end in unpredictable ways. The aftermath of each failure, unfortunately, only leaves Wain more vulnerable than before, making it that much harder for him to hold onto himself and his life.

All in all, the film promises to be a human portrait of someone who respected the natural world around him without knowing the true power of what he brought to his friends, family, and even strangers. The Chicago Sun-Times called it "a loving and respectful portrait of a man who created irresistibly adorable kitschy cats more a century before their spiritual descendants were racking up the views on YouTube."