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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

POSTER ART
Click poster to enlarge
More posters to select

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
TBC
Cast
Freddie Highmore
Keri Russell
Jonathan Rhys-Meyers
William Sadler
Terrence Howard
Robin Williams.
Directors
Kirsten Sheridan.
Screenwriters
Nick Castle
James V Hart.
Running Time
TBC minutes

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August Rush
A musical fantasy, but not a musical


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Plot
Evan (Highmore), a foundling musical prodigy, sets off to locate his parents (Rhys Meyers and Russell). But he falls into the clutches of Wizard (Williams), who renames him August Rush and plans to exploit his talent.


Review
August Rush

Kirsten Sheridan, the daughter of Irish filmmaker Jim (My Left Foot, In The Name Of The Father) and an Oscar nominee herself for co-scripting dad’s In America, tackles a worryingly twee premise. Luckily, she makes a rather enchanting job of it. The family audience-oriented story might be very, very Oliver Twist, but the execution is unblushingly that of a fairy tale, from the opening aerial shot of darling Freddie Highmore, conducting the music in his head in the centre of a swirling field of wheat, to a Manhattan twinkling like a magical kingdom.

Moving back and forth in time, we first meet Highmore’s bullied Evan in an orphanage, where his only comfort is the music he hears in everything around him (a conceit Sheridan handles charmingly). We are then treated to the brief but passionate love affair between Jonathan Rhys Meyers’ Irish rock guitarist and Keri Russell’s sheltered classical cellist. Quite how a couple manage to lose not only each other but the baby they conceived under a magical full moon is hard to account for in this day of search engines and your-whole-life-is-there-for-all-to-see databases, but the pair suffer both travails at the hissable contrivance of Russell’s mean, ambitious father.

Eleven years after the romance, daddy, mummy and foundling are spread across the country but share a mystic musical bond, so plucky Evan runs away to New York to make his music heard, believing it will lead his lost parents to him. Given how many people want to become famous, he does so with mind-blowing ease, securing a full scholarship to Juilliard and a concert showcase in Central Park before you can say, “Hang on a minute…”

That all doesn’t proceed happily for quite an anxious age is down to Robin Williams’ malevolently OTT musical street hustler Wizard, a Fagin-like figure (though impishly modelled, wardrobe-wise and in demeanour, on Bono) who takes in homeless waifs at his squat in an abandoned theatre, ruthlessly sets the kiddies to busking, and knows a meal-ticket star when he hears one. Everyone else is a bit terrific, including some sidekick musical tykes with real chops. Mark Mancina’s original score is a treat too, and atmospherically appropriate, although Oliver! it ain’t.


Verdict
Unapologetically preposterous, but it is a (very sweet) fairy tale and Highmore is captivating.


Reviewed by Angie Errigo

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for August Rush
Empire Star Rating

it was cute

What else is there to say but it made me smile and it wasn't too bad either ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by DJ Funktris at 23:35, 25 March 2010 | Report This Post


August Rush

Sweet, sacarine, contrived. Good acting though but in an improbable story line. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lynnshep at 04:34, 22 July 2008 | Report This Post


August Rush

Sweet, sacarine, contrived. Good acting though but in an improbable story line. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lynnshep at 04:34, 22 July 2008 | Report This Post


Beautiful Movie With Music At Its Heart

August Rush Is A Moving Lovely Film Starring An Alstar Cast Including Freddie Highmore, Robin Williams And John Rhy-Meyers. The Script Was Fantastic And The Songs Were Fun Toe Tappers Aswell As Slow Peace Makers. August Rush Is A Must See Film Of 2007!! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by BenIsMovieKing at 10:00, 14 July 2008 | Report This Post


So moving and lovely.

A very sweet film. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by nc_jj at 19:37, 29 March 2008 | Report This Post


So moving and lovely.

A very sweet film. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by nc_jj at 19:37, 29 March 2008 | Report This Post


This movie is a story that requires people to suspend their disbelief before entering the theatre. That being said, if you can accomplish this, it's an absolutely beautiful and uplifting film which just makes you feel better about life. It's a story about three people torn apart by circumstance, and brought back together through love, perseverance, and a shared love of music which comes together to make a lovely, cheesy, but lovely ending scene in the park with a gorgeous composition. Jon... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Cblotnicky at 08:29, 12 December 2007 | Report This Post


boring zzzzz

i thought this film dragged out half way through i just wanted it to end hangmoure needs acting lessons and it was to boring!! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ryanand conor at 18:39, 10 December 2007 | Report This Post


Sentimental crap

Posted twice, oops ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Davechoc at 14:09, 30 November 2007 | Report This Post


Sentimental crap

Tricky to say if it's the worst film this year, but it's easily the most sentimentally vomit-inducing as well as being ridiculously implausible. Freddie 'my face is too small for my hair' Highmore's narration is nauseating, Robin Williams is irritating as ever and Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Keri Russell have very little to go on except to look pretty and slightly perplexed most of the time - and note how by the end of the film they haven't aged at all in the twelve years since their son's bi... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Davechoc at 14:09, 30 November 2007 | Report This Post


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