Music Box (1989)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  January 1990 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 4,866 users  
Reviews: 32 user | 19 critic

A lawyer defends her father accused of war crimes, but there is more to the case than she suspects.



0Check in

Watch Now

From $9.99 on Amazon Video

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Country (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Gilbert Ivy and his wife Jewell are farmers. They seem to be working against the odds, producing no financial surplus. Gilbert has lost hope of ever becoming prosperous, but his wife ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Pearce
Stars: Jessica Lange, Sam Shepard, Wilford Brimley
Blue Sky (1994)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Jessica Lange stars in a period drama about a family moving to a military base, and she quickly becomes part of a cover-up involving nuclear bomb tests.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Jessica Lange, Tommy Lee Jones, Powers Boothe
Sweet Dreams (1985)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Jessica Lange stunningly portrays Patsy Cline, the velvet-voiced country music singer who died in a tragic plane crash at the height of her fame.

Director: Karel Reisz
Stars: Jessica Lange, Ed Harris, Ann Wedgeworth
Frances (1982)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The true story of Frances Farmer's meteoric rise to fame in Hollywood and the tragic turn her life took when she was blacklisted.

Director: Graeme Clifford
Stars: Jessica Lange, Kim Stanley, Sam Shepard
Hanna K. (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An Israeli lawyer is defending a Palestinian charged by The Military Court System in the Israeli-Occupied Territories. It's a tough case because of a strong political background.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Jill Clayburgh, Jean Yanne, Gabriel Byrne
Betrayed (1988)
Action | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An FBI agent posing as a combine driver becomes romantically involved with a Midwest farmer who lives a double life as a white supremacist.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Debra Winger, Tom Berenger, John Heard
Missing (1982)
Drama | History | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

When an idealistic writer disappears during the Right Wing military coup in 1973 Chile, his wife and American businessman father try to find him.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek, Melanie Mayron
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A mother of two sons finds life considerably difficult on her own after the death of her beloved husband. Due to debt she must move them to Baltimore, and deal with the hardships and all ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Brickman
Stars: Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates, Arliss Howard
The Ax (2005)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A chemist (Garcia) loses his job to outsourcing. Two years later and still jobless, he hits on a solution: to genuinely eliminate his competition.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: José Garcia, Karin Viard, Geordy Monfils
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An unknown Polish writer can't publish his novels, so his ex-wife decides to help him and get some of the profit for herself. She finally finds a publisher, but there's a strange single condition that could cost the writer his life.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: André Dussollier, Pierre Arditi, Jirí Menzel
Eden Is West (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A drama centered around the illegal immigrants living in the EU.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Riccardo Scamarcio, Odysseas Papaspiliopoulos, Léa Wiazemsky
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In occupied France during the WWII, a German officer is murdered. The collaborationist Vichy government decides to pin the murder on six petty criminals. Loyal judges are called in to convict them as quickly as possible.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Louis Seigner, Roland Bertin, Michael Lonsdale


Cast overview, first billed only:
Mike Laszlo
Jack Burke
Harry Talbot
Mikey Talbot
Georgine Wheeler
Mari Töröcsik ...
Magda Zoldan
J.S. Block ...
Judge Silver
Sol Frieder ...
Istvan Boday
Karchy Laszlo
Elzbieta Czyzewska ...
Melinda Kalman
Magda Szekely Marburg ...
Judit Hollo
Felix Shuman ...
James Nathanson
Michael Shillo ...
Geza Vamos
George Pusep ...
Vladimir Kostav


Hungarian immigrant Mike Laszlo has done well for himself since arriving in the USA nearly 50 years ago. He is particularly proud of his daughter, Ann, a successful lawyer. Following the release of some secret WWII records by the Russians, Mike finds himself accused of being a notorious war criminal. He's convinced it's a communist plot to discredit him and insists that Ann defend him in court. Written by Col Needham <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


As a lawyer all she wanted was the truth. As a daughter all she wanted was his innocence. How well do you really know your father?


Drama | Thriller


PG-13 | See all certifications »





Release Date:

January 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mucho más que un crimen  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$6,263,883 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


After the movie was released, screenwriter Joe Eszterhas's own father, Istvan Eszterhas, was accused of war crimes in Hungary for printing anti-Semitic editorials and even organizing a book burning. See more »


Mack Jones: What do we know about our parents?
See more »


References 60 Minutes (1968) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Holds up a decade later for its fine performances
9 June 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Excellent performances by Armin Mueller-Stahl and Jessica Lange (and even Michael Rooker in a thankless role) make "The Music Box" well-worth seeing (and seeing again). I also appreciated Costa-Gavras's establishing shots such as the dizzying image in a large building as Lazlo and his daughter go up an elevator to meet with federal prosecutors, pigeons on the window sill of the court room, etc. I liked the way Chicago and Budapest are used in the movie as two poles of the story. It is true that a few things do not make sense. Ann Talbot (Lange) accuses the US prosecutor (Frederick Forest) of letting the Hungarian government dictate his case, and the US does seem to rely entirely on Hungarian evidence, never bothering to look for any evidence west of Budapest. There is something to be said, however, for the suspension of disbelief. If the US prosecutors were not so incompetent, then it would not be entirely up to Talbot, the moral center of the movie, to uncover the truth and carry the responsibility for it entirely by herself. It is, by the way, the Hungarians and not the Russians whom Lazlo accuses of trying to frame him.

19 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
the end leopat
Song? funky_monkey_8_
the music box tim-wilde-1
Region 2 DVD Aspect ratio? Russell_Zoloft
Ann Talbot cupodirect
laslo kathy2
Discuss Music Box (1989) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: