Amazon Holiday

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

They Came to Play

Q: What’s the movie about?

A: This documentary follows the 2007 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs, who for the most part, play just as well as professionals despite their "real" jobs as doctors, lawyers, and dental assistants.

Q: Who’s in the movie?

A: The biggest star is the music, so let me do some name droppin': Bach, Mozart, Chopin, Beethoven, Schubert, Rachmaninoff, Gershwin, Debussy, Schumann... and for you specialists: Alkan, Barber, Ravel, and Liszt

Q: Is this movie worth the price of admission?

A: PhotobucketProceed with Caution. If you enjoy classical piano and stories about regular people with amazing musical talent, this film is for you. If you enjoy Piña Coladas and makin' love in the rain it's not.

Q: Will this movie make me laugh?

A: Surprisingly, there is an erroneous belch in this film. But that's about as rowdy as it gets.

Q: Will this movie make me cry?

A: If you put your kid in piano classes thinking he'd have a big career, you may as well start crying now, because you only have to watch this doc once to know that for every amazing piano player, there are about 74 amazinger ones, and that's not counting the prodigies.

Q: Will this movie be up for any awards?

A: It actually won an Audience Award in Fort Lauderdale. Them Floridians must be some highfalutin' audience types!

Q: How is the Acting?

A: Culturally, I enjoyed watching how the foreign competitors acted when they lost, in comparison to the American ones. And here is my conclusion: everyone who's not American lets their hurt and disappointment show, while everyone who is American bites his tongues and hopes that no one will notice that he cares. Chew on that, Americans.

Q: How is the Directing?

A: There's not a great variety of shots, but they are all well lit, and the 3 angles chosen to shoot the piano competition are the right ones.

Q: How is the story/script?

A: The structure is in line with all the other docs of this nature, including Spellbound, Wordplay, and Mad Hot Ballroom. Only in this doc there are really no great stakes to winning or losing because, as one character puts it, "It's all right, I've got a day job!" (which happens to be as doctor). Sadly, because of the low stakes, there's not that much suspense as to who wins or loses.

Q: Where can I see the trailer?


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