This film has been nominated for seven Academy Awards. It is a film about David Helfgott, an eccentric piano player with an extraordinary life.
David Helfgott, as the film claims, was raised by an abusive, music-worshipping, father who wanted nothing more than to have his son play the Rach 3 (a piano concerto written by Rachmoninoff and considered to be the most difficult piece ever written). Missing out on absolutely everything in life, David somehow made it out of his abusive home and into the Royal London Music Academy where he finally succeded in his (or his fathers?) life goal. However, achieving this amazing success drove the man into insanity. Only until his wife finally meets him is he given a link to reality.
This film is flooded with exceptional performances from all involved. Most noteworthy (no pun intended) is Geoffrey Rush who portrays David as an adult. He was somehow able to capture this mans insanity and rapid mumblings. Also, Rush needed no hand double for his piano playing scenes. Noah Taylor succeded in his task of portraying David as a young, socially retarted and confidence-lacking man. I've seen Armin Mueller-Stahl play a mean person before in The Power of One. This time he is an abusive father who somehow doesn't know it. Sir John Gielgud and Lynn Redgrave also were strong in their roles as an accomplished piano professor and an unusually caring woman, respectively.
The music in this movie is amazing. Many of the pieces heard throughout are played by the real David Helfgott who is on tour during the release of this movie.
The acting and the music in this film are both spectacular. However, this film lacks the powerful emotion that a story such as this has the potential to provide. It is also ineffective in establishing the setting at various spots in the film which makes it confusing to first-time viewers.
This film is worth it if you like good music and are mature enough to understand it. On the other hand, if you're one of those who visits this website solely to look at the pictures, then this film is not for you.
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