Gretta (Keira Knightley) and her long-time boyfriend Dave (Adam Levine) are college sweethearts and songwriting partners who decamp for New York when he lands a deal with a major label. But the trappings of his new-found fame soon tempt Dave to stray, and a reeling, lovelorn Gretta is left on her own. Her world takes a turn for the better when Dan (Mark Ruffalo), a disgraced record-label exec, stumbles upon her performing on an East Village stage and is immediately captivated by her raw talent. From this chance encounter emerges an enchanting portrait of a mutually transformative collaboration, set to the soundtrack of a summer in New York City.Written by
The Weinstein Company
John Carney is back with a new musical. His 2006 film "Once" is one of my favorite films of all time and I was interested to see where Carney would go next. Watching the trailers for "Begin Again" didn't give me much hope for it, but just enough for me to go out and see it. I enjoyed it much more than I expected though.
"Begin Again" is very similar to "Once," except Carney has a bigger budget and famous movie stars. It deals with Dan and Greta (Mark Ruffalo and Keira Knightley, respectively) who after being cheated on by their former boyfriend/girlfriend meet up and record some songs together. Ruffalo is great as the down on his luck, charming, but often drunk, music producer Dan. Knightley also has a solid performance. Adam Levine does a good job of being a jerk and James Corden is hilarious as Greta's busking friend Steve. The films has themes of love, fatherhood, and the way we use music in our lives.
"Begin Again" is for all the music lovers out there who enjoy creating music. The movie is filled with characters whose religion is music. Look at Dan's car and how he has a music cable hung up on the mirror next to a cross. There's a great moment when Dan listens to Greta perform for the first time. What is just a voice and guitar slowly grows into something much bigger and beautiful. The soundtrack is more poppy compared to the folk songs in "Once," but they are nice to listen to.
This film is the movie you kind of have to be in the mood for to really enjoy. It can be predictable and sappy at times, but it does it well. If you accept it for what it is, you'll enjoy it. "Begin Again" is a musical treat this summer that will leave you wanting to listen to more music and maybe even creating some of your own.
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