Thursday, March 12, 2015

Don't Miss ... Begin Again

Begin Again was a bit of a sleeper last summer. It's not a super-hero or action franchise flick with lots of money behind it, but it did star Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo. Catherine Keener, Hailee Steinfeld, Yasiin Bey (aka Mos Def) and Adam Levin (from Maroon 5 fame) round out the supporting cast.

Knightley plays a songwriter who moves to New York with her rock-star boyfriend (Levine). She isn't interested in the limelight, just the art. He is interested in the limelight and their relationship suffers. One evening she's performing one of her songs at a club and Ruffalo's character, a down-and-out music executive, likes what he hears. They embark on creating an album on their terms as outcasts of the music industry machine. Knightley performs the songs herself - and she does an excellent job. I appreciated that the movie didn't go for the obvious here - I don't want to spoil the film by explaining this further, but let me just say it was refreshing to see a friendship blossom. Begin Again is a light film, but it still has something to say.

It's from the director of Once, John Carney, so if you enjoyed that, you'll probably appreciate this one too. If you're a music fan in general you'll find something to appreciate here as well. There's a scene where Knightley and Ruffalo share an iPod and listen to music together while roaming New York City. Perfection.