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Music Box (1989)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  January 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 4,805 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.



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Title: Music Box (1989)

Music Box (1989) on IMDb 7.3/10

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



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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 »


Featured in The 62nd Annual Academy Awards (1990) See more »

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User Reviews

Intense Court Drama
18 November 2006 | by (Argentina) – See all my reviews

Greek director Costa Gavras is the one that gave us such strong and impressive films as "Z" (based on the kidnapping and murder of CIA agent Dan Mitrione by pro-Cuban Tupamaro's urban guerrilla in Ururguay in the late 60's) and "Missing" (about the disappearance of a young American citizen during General Pinochet's military government in Chile in the 70's). No doubt the man liked to enter compromising and complex movies.

In "Music Box" he delivers a sort of court film drama about a lawyer in Chicago that defends her father when he is accused of being a war criminal in his youth as a member of the Hungarian branch of the German SS troops. Though perhaps sort of predictable, the film is intense and catching right from the start. Jesicca Lange renders one of the best performances of her career and so does Armin Mueller-Stahl in the main roles both most convincing.

With no major bumps along its 2 hours run, "Music Box" is an enjoyable and highly recommendable product in its genre.

Just for the record: in Argentina "Music Box" was renamed as "Mucho màs que un crimen" ("Much More than Just a Crime").

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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