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Le batteur du boléro (1992)

Keeping the rhythm for twenty or so minutes in Ravel's Boléro can be an arduous and excruciatingly tedious task for the orchestra's unsung hero: the drummer.

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Cast overview:
... Le batteur
Laurent Petitgirard ... Le chef d'orchestre
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Storyline

To some, Ravel's Boléro is considered to be an exquisite piece of music, while on the other hand, to others, it is nothing more than an excruciatingly tedious musical ordeal. Nevertheless, has anyone ever spared a moment to contemplate on the arduous task of keeping the rhythm for twenty or so minutes the orchestra's unsung hero, the Boléro drummer, has to endure? Written by Nick Riganas

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drummer | orchestra | rhythm | drums | task | See All (9) »

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Short | Comedy | Music

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12 April 1995 (Spain)  »

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Bolero  »

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User Reviews

Lacking substance but still manages to be interesting if not great
30 July 2004 | by See all my reviews

As the orchestra plays, a man sits keeping a simple rhythm on his single drum. Over the duration of the film we watch as he keeps the rhythm but struggles to keep his focus as he gets slightly bored with such a simple job.

I'm not sure what the point of this short film is but it is hypnotically effective while it does it. Simply, for 8 minutes the music plays while we are treated to a static profile shot of the drummer keeping time. He moves his head, he glances around, he stretches but never breaks the time. In terms of content, nothing actually happens but I couldn't look away for the promise that it might. However when the film ends it is not a disappointment as it is quite nice a conclusion even if it just stops. The music makes it more enjoyable because you feel like you are seeing a small part of a bigger thing that you can only hear.

It isn't perfect of course because there is no substance and there is nothing of great interest that actually occurs. The static camera could have been awful but it still manages to be interesting nonetheless. Villeret is pretty good considering how little he has to do and, while he can't make it great, he does enough to hold the attention.

Overall this is not a great short but, for what it is, it holds the attention really well and is quite engaging but just don't expect too much from it. I suppose if it does enough to grab you enough to watch twice then there may be enough there to allow you to interpret the image you see as an insight into how big things of beauty (the music) are all made up of small things that appear insignificant or boring.


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