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The Music Teacher (1988)
"Le maître de musique" (original title)

PG  |   |  Drama, Music  |  1 February 1989 (France)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 667 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 2 critic

Aging opera singer Joachim Dallayrac retires from the stage and retreats to the countryside to school two young singers, Sophie and Jean. Although the rigorous training takes its toll on ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
José van Dam ...
Joachim Dallayrac
Anne Roussel ...
Sophie Maurier
Philippe Volter ...
Jean Nilson
Sylvie Fennec ...
Estelle Fischer
...
Prince Scotti
...
François Manssaux
Marc Schreiber ...
Arcas
Alain Carre ...
Attendant
David Ashman ...
English Critic
Bob Bender ...
English Critic
Jonathan Fox ...
English Critic
Jeannette Bakker ...
Diva
Philippe Drecq ...
Dandy
Jean Gerardy ...
Old Man
Yvette Merlin ...
Louise
Edit

Storyline

Aging opera singer Joachim Dallayrac retires from the stage and retreats to the countryside to school two young singers, Sophie and Jean. Although the rigorous training takes its toll on both teacher and students, there is plenty of time for relationships to develop between the three. Based on their teacher's reputation, Sophie and Jean are invited to participate in a singing contest staged by Prince Scotti. Scotti's protege is set up to get revenge for Scotti's defeat at the hands of Dallayrac in a similar competition many years ago. The young students overcome Scotti's trickery to win the competition. Written by Kevin Kraynak <kevin@kraynakk.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

1 February 1989 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Music Teacher  »

Box Office

Gross:

$1,086,894 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Fujicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

[first lines]
Joachim Dallayrac: Ladies and gentlemen, that was my last performance.
See more »

Soundtracks

Waltz
Written by David Miller
Performed by Anne Leonardo (Cello), Guy Danel (Violin), Paul Declerck,
Ursula Gorniak (Viola)
Conducted by David Miller
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Music Teacher
27 May 2011 | by (Cairo, Egypt) – See all my reviews

As a dark horse, this Belgian film surprisingly got an Oscar nomination for BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM in 2009, directed by Gerard Corbiau, whom maybe we feel more familiar with for his later work FARINELLI (1994), another music-related opus, with a more dramatic pathos within.

Ominously the music itself steals the thunder of the film per se, which leaves it in an awkward position, where only genuine opera lovers could rigorously indulge themselves with it while for laypeople like me, the waning correlation is unavoidable and discouraging.

The film stars a real maestro José van Dam (the celebrated Belgian bass-baritone) as a singer, who is compelled to retire in his middle-age by his arch enemy, the Duke, with the help of his loyal wife, he trains two disciples and finally get his vengeance over the Duke. However Mr. van Dam's stiff performance could not be excused as a stark novice stage-fright; two young leads Anne Roussel and Philippe Volter also fail to be impressive apart from their singing parts. By contrast, only Sylvie Fennec and Patrick Bauchau deliver some sincere acting skills without too much superficial showing-off.

The setting, costume and all its delicate props are in their right places to exude a bourgeois sentiment which casually goes well with the film's uneventful narrative. The final showdown is a fleeting opera duel between two respective disciples from the maestro and the Duke. The mask tableau is a major attraction, too bad it just ends like that, without too much aftertaste.

After all, one cannot complain more about this film as long as music save us all from this molecularly mundane world.


2 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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