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|Index||355 reviews in total|
I am writing this as an alternate viewpoint to the praise heaped on
this film over these pages. Bottom line, the film is inoffensive, but
really not very substantive entertainment-wise or message-wise. It
starts with a CGI treatment of a wheat field on the opening credits,
which looks distractingly silly. It weakly conveys that the main
character (a boy named Evan Taylor) believes he has some kind of
control over the field, but it falls short of the intended correlation
to his sensation of "music everywhere" which is better illustrated
later in the film. The story set up is VERY slow and heavy-handed in
establishing Evan's beliefs about one day finding his parents. Only
half way through the film does there begin to be any appreciable
progress with regard to the plot. Sure, things happen to the
characters, but nothing really connects the audience to their emotion.
On the positive side, Robin Williams appears in this film in a role that is suited for him and that he plays in a restrained and powerful way. His character is the least trite, although you can somewhat "see him coming" from the moment he enters. Another highlight is the character of "Arthur X" a child musician who basically drives the plot forward all on his own for most of the second act. One senses that this actor Leon G. Thomas is capable of much more than the "official black ghetto kid" dialog he is given. Terrence Howard turns in an elegant performance with his portrayal of a caring social worker. Overall, the film doesn't require a *little* imagination or suspension of disbelief, it requires whole re-calibrations of reality from scene to scene. Not that you would think it's true-to-life, but it doesn't even make sense within its own parameters. Lastly, the music is all over the place thematically, stylistically and not cohesively or meaningfully - although there are some great players performing. An interesting concept for a film, but I found nothing to take away from it. If you want to see a feel-good film in this genre done correctly, check out Serendipity.
In the Walden County Home for Boys, the eleven year-old orphan Evan
Taylor (Freddie Highmore) dreams on the day that his unknown parents
will bring him home. He listens to the sounds everywhere and he is
bullied by the older boys that mock him.
Eleven years ago, the cellist Lyla Novaceck (Keri Russell) and the vocalist and guitarist of a pop band Louis Connelly (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) spend one night together, but Lyla travels with her father Thomas Novacek (William Sadler) on the next morning and they never see each other again. Lyla gets pregnant but she has an accident and when she awakes in the hospital, her father tells her that she lost her baby. Louis unsuccessfully seeks out Lyla and coincidently they both quit music.
One day, Evan flees from the orphanage and goes to New York, following the sounds and expecting to meet his parents. Evan befriends a boy that brings him to an old building where he meets the exploiter "Wizard", who takes advantage of children that beg for him in the Central Park. "Wizard" recognizes that Evan is a prodigy and makes money with him, changing his name to August Rush since there is a social services agent seeking him out. When August visits a church, the pastor indicates him to the Julliard. Meanwhile Lyla learns that she has a son and Louis still seeks her out, and they both restart their careers of musicians.
"August Rush" is a wonderful fairy tale of music and love. I bought this DVD a couple of years ago and I have not given any attention to this film and only today I have watched it. The delightful story has pleasant characters and even the "Wizard" is a nice villain. The unbelievable plot has holes, like the exaggerated talent of the boy or why Louis is not able to locate Lyla, but who cares? They are part of the magic of this film. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): "O Som do Coração" ("The Sound of the Heart")
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
OK, i was undecided about this movie the poster looks OK, the plot
summary somewhat interesting, and i need to watch something inspiring.
knowing how predictable such a movie can be, i check comments here
before heading to the theatres well, i think the movie is nothing
spectacular, i was not moved or impressed i don't have high
expectation, just want to go along with a heart warming story but
nowhere in the movie was there a moving moment first, the love story.
well, simply put, there was nothing to it, just guy meet girl, both out
of no where. one night stand, that's it. both went about their lives
after that, for 11 years next, the main character, his life was just
boring, yes, poor kid, waiting for his parents to come and get him,
that's it followed by robbin williams, didn't even know he is in this
movie till the movie started and saw his name at the opening credits
then, boy search parents, nothing to get viewers excited movie moves in
to boost drama, boy gets to play music. up to this point, the music etc
was nothing spectacular one boring scene to another and the search is
over i was really hoping for some great music at least at the end,
nothing, the ending was short (good & bad) and lack impact i know at
many points, the director was trying to show how string the connection
& love is between the 2 people who spent something like 10 hours
together and made a baby genius.
i know the director was trying to show how talented the boy is when he writes, thinks, composes his music, but i just don't feel it at all the theatre was some 25-35% full, and nobody connected with the movie by the way, viewers were a good mix of adults, professionals, students and housewives, everybody was just glad this boring movie was over
I was more-than-willing to give this a good shot and enjoy a nice
feel-good film starring the likable Freddie Highmore ("Charlie," of
"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" fame). However, when I start
hearing 10- year-old uneducated street urchins talking with
vocabularies like college professors and saying things that no little
kid would say, I get turned off. Add to that more Hollywood
politically-correctness and low morality.....and so much for the nice,
The sweet-looking "good girl" of the story meets a guy on the roof of a building, sleeps with 20 minutes later. They agree to meet somewhere the next day but her parents whisk her back to where she came from, and the two don't connect. Nine months later the baby arrives right when the mother has a car accident. The father says the kid died but really he had given the boy to child services.
Meanwhile, the boy - now 11 and living in an orphanage - runs off to New York City somehow figuring that magically, through hearing music, he'll meet his parents. Sound a little far out? Yeah, it is, and even more so as you see if play out.
It's a nice message of young boy never losing faith that he would meet his parents some day but the way he eventually does is so ridiculous, so far out, so unrealistic.....that it insults your intelligence. This turns out to be an Oliver Twist wannabe that isn't even close to the latter in quality and believability. Robin Williams as a "wizard" ("Fagin" in "Oliver Twist") ought to tell you something.
Meanwhile, "Evan" (Highmore) meets up with this street kid ("Arthur," played by Leon Thomas) is verbally annoying as hell...and things progress from there. There are so many plot holes and contrivances in this film, you couldn't count them all. Examples? Well, the kid learns about sheet music one day and two hours later he's written compositions that would make Beethoven proud. Later, he gets accepted to the Julliard School of Music despite the fact he has no credentials or background on who he is and where he's from!!
If you have any brain at all, this movie is a slap-in-the-face to you.
Did you see the one little painful star I gave it? So you are probably
expecting me to tell you to never ever.
Waste your time watching this movie. But I shan't. Instead, my friends, I am going to tell you to please, use some of your time watching this movie, so you can come back here and rate it with this one little painful star, as I did. And maybe together, drop by drop, we can lower the average rating on this title. Because a 7.5 star compliment on it is INSULTING. Are these voting people really our neighbours, and leaders, and doctors?? Com'on, ye people of sense and sensibility, join me and suffer this movie and be merry you found the strength and then give it the only rating it deserves.
PS: I am not going to elaborate on the "oh-you're-so-mean!" side characters and the sanctified trinity of the main characters and their ridiculously hollow "deep" emotions within their hearts of jelly who have no backbone to ever efficiently stand up for themselves and all they do is cry and moan and dream under the moon and hope that their sorry lives will be solved by cosmical deliverance because they sure won't do a thing since they are made of childish fairy-jelly glow, ...nor on the plot and dialogue silliness, and such, ...because you can read all about it on other reviews.
You know?: Just go watch it. If you cry, please may it be from insult.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Based on all the implausibilities i gave this a 3. Based on the fact
that i managed to stay interested until the end i gave it a 6.
It is crap but it is watchable. I don't know if i've ever thought that about a movie before.
So in the end i plunked for a 4.5 score.
Story, orphan finds his parents who were unaware he was alive thru music. Kid ends up conducting the NY philharmonic 6 months after first learning to play music. cough cough......
bad but somehow i got to the end.
Other reviewers compared it to 'Oliver'. Oliver is classic, this story had to have been whipped up while micro-waving 2 minute noodles.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
(SPOILERS)---If it's even possible to add to this festering tripe of what is proffered to be a beefy movie) 'August Rush' should be called Aw Gold Rush. It's a little better than (and assimilates to)'Death to Smoochy' (also played in by Robin Williams. Not that this makes Mr Williams a bad actor, etc.) This movie gives me that same feel with some 'Pay It Forward' mixed in. The movie conveniently and carefully avoids depicting actions of certain characters as irresponsible instead rewarding and spares us the sordid details other than self-ascribed depression. I recall class-assigned required reading of Charles Dickens novels. The characters behave as high-minded persons who don't respond with common-sense thinking. They feel, but don't think , deep. After this love-at-first-sight, horny-tonight rendezvous... maybe it's just the music they hear---that mesmerizes all..yeah, it's the music's fault. oh, I loved the 'dueling guitars' and no one was retarded, just gifted. No scene to suffer for deliverance (from). I could go on how this movie is crafty, I mean crafted, why bother? ah, the striking resemblance of the primary duo to (is that Nicole Kidman? and Ray (what's-his-face)..oh yeah, Liotta) both younger versions decidedly of course, but damn it's almost like the clone machine was tweaked un-beknownst to us. okay ,they're not the real two; but that's in line with the gist of this movie. ***ROBIN WILLIAMS***, ***TERRENCE HOWARD***...are they really in this movie? funny, I thought anybody could play those parts. Well, I guess I'm not the classy-cal, new-age, old-school, happy-melancholy, techno-inspired type to swatch this movie. But my date said she liked it.
What's good about this movie:
* It's better than both Morvern Callar and Pearl Harbor.
* The cast is mostly good looking.
* Most of the music is pretty good.
What's not good about this movie (and these are really all the same thing):
* Requires disbelief to be not so much suspended as repealed.
* The plot would not have been believable even if you were stoned, drunk, and high on crack.
* If this movie were Tinker Bell, it would be dead.
Thanks to wikipedia for pointing out the correct spelling of Tinker Bell...
I rented August Rush a few days ago with good expectations, I just
heard wonderful things about this film, so I was excited to see it. I
watched the film last night and I am very much in love with this movie,
everything about it was just so sweet and lovely. This movie reminded
me of the story of Oliver Twist, it's a different take on the story
with the power of music and just listening. The cast, the story, the
editing, the direction, the music, nothing is off about August Rush.
Freddie Highmore has such an incredible talent for such a young age,
but his face says so much and his acting is just perfect and makes the
audience just fall in love with him. Keri Russell is just pulling in
one great performance to another, from Waitress to August Rush, she's
just lovely. We also have the talented Jonathan Rhys Meyers from the
Tudors, the incredible Terrence Howard, then a disturbing yet memorable
performance from Robin Williams.
Evan Taylor is an orphan who is just convinced that he can hear his parent's music, that they do want him and he goes out to find them. Lyla and Louis, Evan's parents, were two young people who found a strong connection and had a one night stand, but Lyla's father takes her away from Louis and when a horrible accident happens, Lyla's father lies to her telling her that her baby died, but behind her back puts the baby up for adoption. Evan is set to find his parents but come across a musical group of kids, who are making money for Wizzard, when Evan plays music, it's magical, Wizzard exposes Evan giving him a new name, August Rush and makes money off of him. But when Lyla finds out about her son being alive, she goes to New York to find him, Louis starts thinking about Lyla and finds out where she lives, Chicago, but when he finds out she's gone, he goes to New York to relive his band days, instead they find each other and the musical genius their love created.
August Rush is one of the first films of the year that I'm rating a perfect 10, because there is nothing wrong with this film, to be honest, I think it deserves a higher rating than a 7.4. Is this a masterpiece? No, I'm not sure if it will be remembered several years from now, but I do know that this was a great movie and I would be so happy to watch it again. It's perfect for the family to watch, it's perfect for a group of friends, or just even for yourself if you are looking for a good movie to watch. August Rush is a movie that I'm sure will work it's way into your heart, it's a magical film that is absolutely perfect.
August Rush is, from one vantage point, a quintessentially mainstream
film. It's a feel-good movie. As such, it's slickly polished into
something that will be digestible to a wide audience - the downside of
which is that somewhat generic quality that pervades films which swim
safely in the shallow end of the pool. Of course, being commercial
doesn't make a film bad. This one will have its audience, and there is
enough emotion and good intention there to give the right movie-goer
the quasi catharsis he or she is looking for.
To my mind, though, this film has a fundamental, glaring problem. It centers itself thematically around music, yet it demonstrates a thorough lack of musical understanding. People who have never considered nor been exposed to the processes behind music might not notice a problem, but to those who have, the film's central character will more closely resemble a comic-book-superhero version of a musician than any musician, genius or no, who has ever lived.
This young lad's extraordinary ability (to reach professionalism at any instrument, and even theory\notation, within seconds of coming into contact with it for the first time) is only a symptom of the problem. Another is the film's complete lack of effort to realistically correlate the music being produced with the way the instruments are being played. For instance, the camera may close in on a hand playing ascending notes on a piano, and yet we hear descending notes. Or more glaringly, an intricate song may be formed by swinging both arms at the strings of a guitar without even dealing with frets. In another scene, synthetic sounds are used in the score to represent real instruments being played.
This sort of thing is common in a lot of commercial cinema, and I can usually accept it. The reason I can't here is that this film purports to be ABOUT music, yet is entirely ignorant and pedestrian in its representation of it.
Floating somewhere near the heart of the problem is the fact that neither the music in the film, nor the film's fallacious representation of the musical process, does anything to convey the true depth and power of music, even remotely, despite some early dialog which suggested it may at least scratch the surface. To every musician watching the film, it will be glaringly obvious that the director is not a musician, nor truly passionate about music, and should therefore not have directed the film.
Here, in my belief, lies the biggest mistake of the Hollywood system - When the primary force determining what project gets made, and by whom, is money, filmmakers are rarely expressing their own voice. I don't remember the last time I saw a Hollywood film which genuinely felt like it was the vision of an artist who really had something to say.
Perhaps this film actually was written by someone who loves and understands music and wanted to convey something about it, but the fact that you can't tell simply by watching the film is a testament to its failure.
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