Tuesday, June 2, 2009

August Rush

by Pa Rock
Film Critic

I discovered August Rush quite by accident as I was channel surfing a couple of nights ago. It took me just a few moments to be swept up into the tale of the eleven-year-old orphan who could hear music and knew that it was his parents calling out to him.

The parents were Keri Russell - a concert cellist, and Jonathan Rhys Meyers - a bass guitarist and singer in a rock band. Their music magically combines one warm summer night in New York City and draws them to each other. They meet for the first time that night at a party, after their respective concerts, and wind up spending a night of passion on an outdoor bench. The next day they are separated by the girl's evil father (William Sadler), who wants his daughter to reach musical greatness without the unnecessary distraction of a rocker boyfriend.

The girl becomes pregnant (of course) as a result of her one night stand. She gives birth to a son, but is told by her father that the boy died. Grampa then spirits the baby off to a group home where he grows up hearing music and waiting on his parents to find him.

And the world moves on. The two lovers pine for each other but each assumes that the other has moved on. Neither realize that they have a son waiting to be found.

Evan (Freddie Highmore) flees the group home and goes in search of a social worker (Terrence Howard) who has befriended him. (Gotta love those social workers!) Instead of finding the social worker, he winds up in the clutches of Robin Williams, a Fagan character who places street urchins around the city playing music for tips. The money, of course, goes to Williams. When Evan picks up a guitar and immediately begins making wonderful music, Williams knows that he has a gold mine. It is Williams who changes Evan's name to August Rush, after a brand name that he saw painted on the side of a truck.

That's enough about the story. Suffice it to say that this is a happy movie for the child in all of us, but it has enough sinister elements to keep up a decent level of suspense. The villainy aside, you know in your heart that things will work out for this young musical prodigy and his star-crossed parents. The music is superb, making August Rush a treat for the ears as well as for the heart.

The music was so good that I bought the sound track. The movie was so good that I will make a point of seeing it again. I recommend August Rush enthusiastically!

1 comment:

BK in MO said...

I loved the movie - got it on Netflix a few months ago and promptly bought the sound track. It is a good thing you and I don't watch movies together, because we would be a hapless couple of saps, not able to keep each other from plummeting into sobbing heaps of blubber. LOL. I think we are both a couple of softies. I just watched the Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and it is also a good show, but it is nothing like the short story by Fitzgerald it is based on. The movie added a whole story around the premise. It was good, but I wonder what Fitzgerald would think?