7.3/10
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157 user 42 critic

Mr. Holland's Opus (1995)

PG | | Drama, Music | 19 January 1996 (USA)
A frustrated composer finds fulfillment as a high school music teacher.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Principal Helen Jacobs
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Gertrude Lang
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Louis Russ
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Bobby Tidd - Student
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Rowena Morgan
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Sarah Olmstead
Nicholas John Renner ...
Cole at 6 Years Old
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Cole at 15 Years Old
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Cole at 28 Years Old
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Governor Gertrude Lang
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Deaf School Principal
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Storyline

Glenn Holland is a musician and composer who takes a teaching job to pay the rent while, in his 'spare time', he can strive to achieve his true goal - compose one memorable piece of music to leave his mark on the world. As Holland discovers 'Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans' and as the years unfold the joy of sharing his contagious passion for music with his students becomes his new definition of success. Written by <russell.boyd@dsto.defence.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Of all the lives he changed, the one that changed the most was his own. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Release Date:

19 January 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Querido maestro  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$92,254 (USA) (19 July 1996)

Gross:

$82,528,097 (USA) (26 July 1996)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During the scene where Mr. Holland's son, Cole, is working on the car in the garage, a bumper sticker for KCAW Raven Radio in Sitka Alaska, can be seen in the background. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning, which is supposedly 1964, Vice Principal Wolters mentions Ralph Nader's book on cars, which wasn't released until 1965, a year later. See more »

Quotes

Glenn Holland: These tests are pathetic. "Name an American composer." Miss Swedlin, your answer was?
Ms. Swedlin: Bach?
[a student giggles]
Glenn Holland: Johann Sebastian Bach. Oh, this... this is my favorite one. "How do you know what key a concerto is in?" Mr. Mims, your answer was "Look on the front page", question mark. Now, this question mark. Was that because you weren't sure or because your English skills are on the same level as your musical theory?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Rocky Horror Picture Show, The (1975) scene courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation See more »

Connections

Features Woodstock (1970) See more »

Soundtracks

SYMPHONY No. 5 IN C MINOR
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
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User Reviews

Oh for the love of crumbcake...
6 December 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

So many people have complained about the Gertrude Lang character (Alicia Witt), Holland's interaction with her, and the purpose of the character, and I am simply amazed at the hostility.

1) "Playing the sunset" was Holland's way of getting Gertrude to relax so she could play the notes fluidly. They both knew that she didn't sound professional, and wasn't going to. The idea was to get her just above the level of making a fool of herself as she did the first time he called on her in class. Then she could, and did, perform in the band without dragging down the whole ensemble.

2) Her goal was not to be a professional musician. Did no one else hear her speech about "I just wanted to be good at *something*"? She listed all the fabulous achievements of her parents and siblings, and concluded, "I'm the only one who's..." The missing word would have been "useless" or "worthless". Or "a failure". Thirty years later she's the governor (not the mayor!), because in 1966, Holland helped her gain confidence for the first time.

3) She wasn't "wasting" Holland's efforts by going into politics. Art, music and theater education don't exist solely to create professional artists, musicians and actors. They also exist to give young people an opportunity for change and growth, even if they never use a paintbrush again.

I liked that plot twist. Almost every high school has an alumnus who has achieved something in art or entertainment, but a lot of people sell one painting or appear in one film and become a hero to their home town. But there are only fifty states, and it takes an extraordinary amount of drive to become governor of one of them. It's unlikely that she would have taken that first step towards empowerment without Holland.


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