The Concert (15)

Jan 05, 2011
Cranbrook Film Society

This is a funny, feel-good, ‘caper’ movie with Tchaikovsky’s great Violin Concerto in D Major at its heart. Ex-conductor Andrei Simoniovich Filipov (Alexei Guskov) is now a janitor at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, having been fired humiliatingly in mid-concert thirty years earlier. The orchestra, too, was broken up and the musicians now scrape a living doing whatever they can to get by.

An opportunity arises for Filipov to complete his concert. Can he put his old orchestra back together and get them to Paris to replace another which has had to cancel at short notice? Not only must he do this without the real Bolshoi administrators finding out, but there is only one soloist he will consider: the brilliant young violinist, Anne-Marie Jacquet (Mélanie Laurent). There is clearly a mystery here which needs to be resolved. Meanwhile the music and the musicians’ commitment to it is the real star of the show.

Radu Mihaileanu was born in Rumania in 1958, the son of a Jewish Communist journalist who survived the Nazi labour camps. Radu fled to France in 1980 to escape Ceausescu’s dictatorship and studied at IDHEC/FEMIS (Institute of Cinematography in Paris). He worked in the theatre as actor, writer and director, becoming assistant to Marco Ferreri. His second full-length feature film as a director, Train de Vie, (Train of Life, 1998), won him two Oscar nominations and several other awards. He published a book of poems in 1987, Une vague en mal de mer.

Radu Mihaileanu | France | 2010 | 119 minutes | 15


            Weighted vote 92.8%