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Director Luigi Comencini resists all efforts to make his filmization of the classic Puccini opera La Boheme self-consciously cinematic. As a result, his version of the opera may find itself out of favor with some film fans, but much treasured by Puccini purists. The principal roles of the tragic Mimi and headstrong aspiring artist Rodolfo are sung by Barbara Hendricks and Luca Canonici. Hendricks seems a tad too healthy for the frail Mimi, but this is a common shortcoming with singers who play this part: if one is too sickly, one can't attain those crystal-clear high notes. James Conlon conducts the National Orchestra of France on the La Boheme soundtrack. As in most other adaptations of this piece, the 1989 La Boheme draws its inspiration as much from the Henri Muger novel Scenes of Bohemian Life as it does from the Puccini opera.