6.9/10
1,544
22 user 81 critic

Museum Hours (2012)

Trailer
2:11 | Trailer
When a Vienna museum guard befriends an enigmatic visitor, the grand Kunsthistorisches Art Museum becomes a mysterious crossroads that sparks explorations of their lives, the city, and the ways in which works of art reflect and shape the world.

Director:

2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Counting (2015)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Fifteen distinct but interconnected chapters, shot in locations from Russia to New York City to Istanbul. Together, these build to a reckoning at the intersection of city symphony, diary, ... See full summary »

Director: Jem Cohen
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Directors: Jem Cohen, Peter Sillen
Stars: Benjamin Dickerson, Tim Campion, Brian Halloran
Instrument (2003)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A collaboration between filmmaker Jem Cohen and the Washington D.C. band Fugazi, covering the 10 year period of 1987-1996. Far from a traditional documentary, this is a musical document; a ... See full summary »

Director: Jem Cohen
Stars: Brendan Canty, Joe Lally, Ian MacKaye
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A 1980s-set story centered around a man vs. machine chess tournament.

Director: Andrew Bujalski
Stars: Kriss Schludermann, Tom Fletcher, Wiley Wiggins
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A documentary that goes inside one of the great museums of the world: The National Gallery in London.

Director: Frederick Wiseman
Stars: Leanne Benjamin, Kausikan Rajeshkumar, Jo Shapcott
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.4/10 X  

In an underground prison an inmate escapes during a riot. One year later, a group of friends set out to locate an old hermit shack. Their worst nightmares are revealed when they spawn an evil darkness within the escaped prisoner.

Director: Chris Abell
Stars: Vicki Rivard, Aiden Simko, Allen Bergeron
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A professor in the film department at a provincial university goes to Seoul to meet his senior, who works as a film critic, and stays in a northern Seoul village for three days.

Director: Sang-soo Hong
Stars: Joon-sang Yoo, Sang Jung Kim, Seon-mi Song
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A group of soldiers in a small town on the Mekong River in northern Thailand are struck with a bizarre sleeping illness.

Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul
Stars: Jenjira Pongpas, Banlop Lomnoi, Jarinpattra Rueangram
Purple Heart (2005)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

PURPLE HEART tells of a clean-up effort after a covert mission gone wrong. It is the story of Colonel Allen, the leader of a new, elite military unit designed for covert operations. His ... See full summary »

Director: Bill Birrell
Stars: William Sadler, Demetrius Navarro, Mel Harris
Leviathan I (2012)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A documentary shot in the North Atlantic and focused on the commercial fishing industry.

Directors: Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Verena Paravel
Stars: Brian Jannelle, Adrian Guillette, Arthur Smith
Jauja (2014)
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A father and daughter journey from Denmark to an unknown desert that exists in a realm beyond the confines of civilization.

Director: Lisandro Alonso
Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Ghita Nørby, Viilbjørk Malling Agger
Chain (2004)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

As regional character disappears and corporate culture homogenizes our surroundings, it's increasingly hard to tell where you are. Actual malls, theme parks, hotels and corporate centers ... See full summary »

Director: Jem Cohen
Stars: Miho Nikaido, Mira Billotte, Tarik O'Regan
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mary Margaret O'Hara ...
Anne
Bobby Sommer ...
Johann
Ela Piplits ...
Gerda - Visiting Lecturer
Marcus O'Hara ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Deborah Gzesh ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Marco Calamita ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Nina Calamita ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Sigrid Mölg ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Evelyne Egerer ...
Bruegel Tour Group
Gerda Hartl ...
Museum Visitor
Ivo Hunek ...
Museum Visitor
Anna Maria Innerhofer ...
Museum Visitor
Anna Nowak ...
Museum Visitor
Michaela Buchegger ...
Museum Visitor
Hellmut Goebl ...
Museum Visitor
Edit

Storyline

In the Kunsthistorisches Art Museum in Vienna, Johann is a security guard who finds a special quiet magic there. One day, a Canadian woman arrives to visit to the city, and the two strike up a friendship through their appreciation of art. That relationship helps put all the other goings-on at the museum and in the city in perspective, as Johann observes and participates in them in a world where art can say so much more than a casual visitor might know. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

6 September 2013 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Godziny otwarcia  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$29,435 (USA) (28 June 2013)

Gross:

$83,725 (USA) (5 July 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Quotes

Johann: After all, many of the works considered greatest in the museums were worth little or nothing in their day. And many of the artists who made them died poor. And yet they sit side by side with paintings that were of great renown and sold for fortunes. Side by side they hang, and if you weren't told, would you know which was witch?
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Dark, Dear Heart
Written and Performed by Mary Margaret O'Hara
Yet Courier Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Bonds us to a world of stillness
21 July 2013 | by (Vancouver, B.C.) – See all my reviews

"The real voyage of discovery lies in not seeing new landscapes but in having new eyes" - Marcel Proust

Jem Cohen's Museum Hours moves art beyond the confines of a stuffy museum and takes it out into the streets of Vienna where its profound observations make irrelevant the artificial distinction between art and life. Cohen widens our view of what is "inside" the museum to include what is "outside," not as a separate part of the experience but as an integrated whole. The film is narrated by Johann (Bobby Sommer), a soft-spoken museum guard at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna who, after spending his younger days traveling with rock bands, has worked at the museum for the past six years, getting to know each painting intimately. His favorite room is the Bruegel room where Flemish Renaissance painter Pieter Bruegel's depictions of 16th century peasant life touch him most deeply.

Having just arrived from Montreal to visit her cousin who is in a coma, Anne (Mary Margaret O'Hara) seeks advice from Johann about directions to the hospital. As the two talk about the city, they develop a friendship and he acts as her tour guide, escorting her to visit ancient and modern sites in Vienna. As the experience opens him to a renewed appreciation of the city and its history, the camera focuses its attention on city life in a way that allows us to notice details that we may have never seen before: young boys on skateboards in the park, an old woman walking up a hill flanked by red cars, the walls of an ancient church, abandoned beer cans on the sidewalk, the faces of pedestrians huddled in the cold waiting for a bus, the boarded-up storefront of a store, and the give and take of bargaining at a local flea market.

Johann and Anne also spend time in the hospital where they talk to Anne's cousin who cannot hear them. Johann describes in details some of the paintings of Rembrandt from memory "all very dark and wise-looking," while Anne sings her a lovely ballad. The narrative of the woman and her cousin develops slowly but the film is not about the story, but about observation and our connection with the world. One of the film's highlights is the discussion of Bruegel by the tour guide (Ela Piplits) talking to a group of eager visitors. According to the guide, in a time of political repression carried out by the Duke of Alba, Bruegel's paintings were radical, "more radical than they might seem."

Dressing as a peasant to immerse himself in the culture of the poorer classes, Bruegel's depiction of the masses was not judgmental but focused on the small details of peasant life. As the director puts it, "This man (Breugel) took a very close, careful look at how working people, peasants lived and did it without a sentimental overlay, but with a respectful interest in the details of their lives." Another moving part of Johann's narration is his story about one of his coworkers, an art student who is no longer at the museum. As Johann tells us, the kid, whom he calls a "Marxist punk," ridiculed the idea of a museum, saying it is all about money and that the still lifes of famous artists are the equivalent of piles of Rolex watches, champagne bottles, and flat-screen TVs.

Though Johann obviously disagrees with this assessment, he does not put the student down, dismiss his objections, or find the need to offer a defense. Museum Hours is a riveting experience that bonds us to a world of stillness, beyond the limits of our sense perception. The film helps us to see with new eyes, enabling us to move towards a deeper, more truthful experience of ourselves and the world, one in which a young black boy in a hoodie is as rare and beautiful as a Rembrandt.


28 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is Kunsthistorisches Art Museum in Vienna the world's best museum? allardd
Songs by Mary Margaret O'Hara swankola
Discuss Museum Hours (2012) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?