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August Rush
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Reviews & Ratings for
August Rush More at IMDbPro »

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

A good, modern fairy tale

Author: Siamois from Canada
21 August 2008

There have been strong reactions to this movie, both positive and negative. A lot of criticisms stem from the unbelievable nature of several plot points, which I find strange seeing as this movie has very little to do with reality. To cut to the chase, opinions that this movie is "worthless" or "crap" should be safely discarded as rubbish immediately. This is actually a solid film, even if it has flaws. There is, however, a certain public that will be turned off by the fantasy aspects and Disney-like elements found here.

The story follows a young boy raised in institutions and desperately wanting to meet his parents, which he knows nothing about. He is driven by his gift and passion for sounds and music. Parallel stories featuring his parents are also told and intersected in this movie. The direction here by Kirsten Sheridan is solid if we except the beginning of the movie, where the quick exposition to the characters and situation is absolutely awful and 80-ish in its rendition. In fact, Sheridan's main weakness seems to be in how to intersect the various bits and characters of the plot. But everything else is appropriate and on target.

The cast is solid, starting with teenager Freddie Highmore. While Highmore doesn't turn a Dakota Fanning or Haley Joel Osment performance, he is endearing and most of the time, totally believable as our main character. Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Keri Russell are great and their scenes together showcase very effective chemistry, which was definitely required. Terrence Howard continues to slowly rise in Hollywood as an actor who should be taken seriously. Finally, Robin Williams has a turn as a stereotypical "fairy tale baddie" that may seem over the top but is right on target for this genre.

But the biggest star of this film is probably music. To make this movie work and rise above countless feel-good movies, great, inspired music was required and fortunately, we get it in spades here. From rock to classical to soundtrack ambiances, everything here is well-meshed together, if a little artificial. Lovers of music will be more than satisfied, while actual musicians may be a wee bit disappointed by the treatment. It's still way, way above average. It's very, very good as a matter of fact.

I tremendously enjoyed August Rush, even with its small flaws. And I do believe those who couldn't get past those flaws are either missing the point, or simply do not enjoy this genre to begin with. Family-friendly entertainment has been a neglected genre, plagued with very poor entries that are totally uninspiring if we except a few movies. Lately, it seems we're seeing improvement and some thoughts put into the art of crafting good movies of this type. August Rush certainly exemplifies this and I recommend it strongly.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Excellent Movie for music lovers!

Author: jokejong from Singapore
24 June 2008

This movie blew my expectations out! I wasn't expecting a lot in the first place, thinking maybe this is another of those simple inspirational yet touching movie... however, what I didn't realize is how rich the movie is in terms of the originality of the plot and its music companionship.

You will definitely enjoy this movie when watching with your loved ones or if you are an avid music lover. Music featured in the song ranges from Classicals to Rock, which is what made me fell so in love with.

The movie was also gripping! Hope for the better life that we're all expecting from August Rush just keeps us on the edge of our seat..!

This is a movie not to be missed, and because this blows my mind so much, I decided to give it FULL MARKS!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Unique (no spoilers)

Author: dreamtheater03 from Netherlands
14 April 2008

Imagine a modern version of Oliver Twist, add beautiful classical and rock music and finish the mix with a somewhat predictable, but nevertheless intriguing love story and "August Rush" is the best that you can possible make out of it.

By watching the opening scene, showing Freddie Highmore in a corn field, I already suspected this could become something very special. It is not very often that a movie kept me hooked from start to end while forgetting everything around me, but "August Rush" pulled it of. The main reason for this is the music and the way how music is interweaved with the plot and that is what makes this movie unique. I have never seen or heard anything like it and I sincerely hope that I'll one day watch a movie that does an even better job. Freddie Highmore, who also performed admirably in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", is one of the very few 14-year old actors that can really act without any awkward moments. Jonathan Rhys Myers and Kerri Russell also perform flawlessly and the rest of the cast does an excellent job as well. It was very interesting to see Robin Williams in a role that was somewhere between good guy, which is his regular role, and bad guy. Saying much more about this could spoil the movie and I definitely don't want that...

This is one of those movies where I'm simply not in the mood for finding something to criticize it. But lets get over that for a few moments and look at the few flaws that are in present in this movie. Basically, the movie is a bit predictable and it has some corny elements in it. When you're about halfway in the movie, then most of the plot will be clear to the majority of viewers. However, I'm not going to let this gem of a movie lose any points for that, because most viewers will be so captivated by the movie that they will hardly (or not at all) notice.

The target group for this movie is a bit difficult to assess. It's not the "Fast and the furious" crowd that wants to see this, neither is it a real kids movie or a real chick flick. Perhaps it's better to categorize this movie as being targeted at people of all ages, that love music and want to see a feel-good movie with beautiful music and top notch acting. For these people this movie is highly, highly recommended! 10* out of 10

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

cheesy, horrible acting, and full of clichés

Author: tedster_98 from United States
19 March 2008

I saw this one on an airline trip and I am glad I didn't waste $4 renting it. It had horrible acting, over-cliché'd roles (gotta have the token ghetto black kids and a baptist church), an undeveloped plot (little filler to explain the boy's childhood or how he got his gift), and an overbearing, repetitive musical score. In addition, the one night stand between Rush's parents seemed SO implausible. (especially since both were sober.) This was a sugary sweet, chick flick done VERY poorly. Even external characters were badly acted. Robin William's character was unrealistic and not menacing enough. Heck, this one was stolen right out of oliver twist. The child placement agency didn't really seem to be too active in looking for the missing Rush....

overall it was very, very mildly entertaining, but don't waste your $ on a rental. Wait until it is released for TV.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

If you had the vaguest of imaginations, you will probably predict it!

Author: Thauseef Ahmed from United States
13 March 2008

With a star cast that consisted of Robin Williams, Terence Howard, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and one of the biggest star kids in Hollywood -Freddie Highmore, a story about a musical genius, it has to be a brilliant movie, hasn't it? Wrong. Instead, this is by far the cheesiest, most predictable trash I have seen this year. Jonathan Rhys Meyers sleepwalks through the movie and the Irish angle that did wonders for Gerard Butler in PS - I love you, only ends up sounding clichéd here.There is no hint of romance between the lead pair. Freddie Highmore who did wonders in movies such as Finding Neverland and Charlie and Chocolate factory, just comes up looking like a kid who has no clue what he is doing. Robbin Williams is entirely wasted in a role that neither has the melancholic undertones that it ought to, nor the dilemma his character must have had. Terence Howard manages to look serious and mournful through out the movie, and while those very traits did wonders for him in Crash and Hustle and Flow, here, they only make you wonder what he is even doing in the movie.

The final verdict? While the makers seem to been successful in assembling a powerful star cast, if only they had paid half as bit importance to the script, they would have a much more watchable movie.

Chances are, you will yawn when you see the kid in the field for the first time, and right through the movie till the credits roll.

5 on 10.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Absolutely appalling

Author: Alejandro Llois from Brazil
26 March 2012

This is one of the worst movies I've seen. I signed up for IMDb especially to review it, because I think it has an incredibly high rating for the total rubbish it is. I decided to watch this movie based on that and I can honestly say it doesn't deserve it. Though I'm rather cynical I have enjoyed some 'fairy-taley' movies, but this one fails on every level. It has a disgustingly non-believable plot, a wholly indolent protagonist (actually the whole cast seems to go about with no commitment to the film whatsoever), an utter lack of any personality and a shallow treatment of everything. It is a film where music plays a very prominent role, and the soundtrack is totally forgettable. There many other good movies around, don't watch this one.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

So Cheesy that it Chokes you !

Author: IloveHanks from India
2 November 2010

August Rush is those sickly mawkish movies which almost choke you to boredom. Let me admit that i don't have a palette for such kinda movies. It might appeal to many people which is evident from the 7.5 rating it has on IMDb.

To add on to the stupidness of the movie are the two unimpressive performances, especially the mother who seemed too stupid to be a mother backed by a father who looked too cool to be a father. The characterization is a major issue for this movie. Both the leads give unremarkable performances,backed by their child.

What can i say about the child. A child who is even more talented than Mozart ?.I love Music, but please don't insult music this way. The main idea behind this movie is complete nonsensical.

oh and i forgot Robin Williams. He also gives a forgettable performance. I totally repent having watched this movie. I know its a musical, but i think listening to ARR songs is a better resort to watching this incredibly stupid sappy cheesy movie.


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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Overloads my suspension of disbelief.

Author: pschwebe from California, United States
9 November 2008

99 words or less (okay, 101): Well intentioned, but immaturely written fable about a boy, his parents, and music. It touches on rich ideas, but only superficially, making up for the shallowness by making it all sort of, you know, well, mystical. Yeah, cool.

The movie pulls out all the manipulative melodramatics: It's oh so moving when we know something the main characters don't. And this happens over and over again. Swells of music in appropriate places. Implausible plot turns. Lot's of emoting. Makes you cry, but you kind of resent it.

Rent "Once" instead. A great movie about the redemptive power of music with no compromises.

I feel better now.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Kidding us?

Author: BlaCkAdDa from Australia
30 August 2008

This is one of the most ridiculous movies I've watched in recent years.

Essentially its the story of an orphan who is trying to find his parents and does so through music.

It comes across like a fairytale, but even Alice In Wonderland was more realistic than this. Lots of movies have those moments where you go 'yeah right' but usually its only 1 or 2, or the movie is some no-brain action flick where it doesn't matter.

In this case you have those moments right through the entire movie, and they get worse as it gets closer to its predictable climax. Im not sure who would actually enjoy this movie, maybe if you're 70, or under 12 but for everyone else I'd save your time.

The acting itself wasn't bad, though the more interesting characters were played by Terrence Howard and Robin Williams, and they were both severely under-developed as you wanted to know more about them and less about this kid with the stupid smile all the time.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

August Rut (Avoid if you liked this film!)

Author: pazu7 from North Hollywood, Ca
24 July 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

August Rush is one of those feel good films that will cause any critic to be bum-rushed with accusations of pretentiousness and/or the malicious desire to ruin the magic. I can assure you that while I may accurately be accused of putting on the occasional air (well, not so occasional perhaps) it is not any inherent malice that inspired this criticism. Rather, it was revenge, completely futile and irrelevant revenge. Not only on the people who took what might have been a truly magical film and turned it instead into a Hallmark Channel meets MTV event with a PTL innuendo thrown in just to tick me off a little more; but also revenge on the people who gave it more than the 4 or 5 stars it deserves, because I actually based my decision to go see it on your ratings. YOU OWE ME!

OK. Some time has passed and I can admit the preceding was hyperbolic. When I wrote it I had just got back from the theater and the score was still ringing in my ears. It's not really that bad… just bad enough, and nothing ticks me off more than an OK film that could have been great.

There are parts that I will admit are are very well done and a scattering of clever lines break through the fog of pallid dialog. But these sparkling moments fizzle out under the overbearing (and occasionally trite) incidental score, and the over-doctored script.

The feature songs, the central theme of the film, are actually cool for the most part. The guitar work is brilliant, and the rest is consuming and even inspiring when it is not sounding like corporate extract of alternative rock.

Robin Williams' character, though not given sufficient time to develop, was surprisingly complex, especially considering the three-chord repetition of the others. Like Jonathan Rhys Meyers for example, a "rocker" (or something) who spews portentous gibberish when he is not running around the film looking pensive and conflicted and emoting like a teenage girl. Or Keri Russell who is pretty and blond and apparently not much else… except for a few good lines here and there.

Freddie Highmore might be a good actor, I don't really know because most of his parts are just K-Pax/Rain Man idiot-savant type staring into the distance before he learns how to play guitar or piano in a matter of minutes. But I really can't blame him for the failure of the script. I generally give kids the benefit of the doubt.

What is most frustrating is that there are occasional moments of … well, I wouldn't say brilliance, but definitely good writing. But it gets stomped out of existence by the next hackneyed moment or drowned in the films manipulative attempts to shove it's message down our collective throats.

Note to filmmakers: You don't have to beat the audience over the head with your message. Let the play say the thing.

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