In Dublin, a single mother (Eve Hewson) rescues a guitar from a dumpster and starts taking online lessons from a musician (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who’s based in Los Angeles; at the same time, she’s struggling with her rebellious teen (Orén Kinlan). John Carney reunited with Gary Clark who wrote the music for Sing Street (2016) and together they provide the songs for this charming dramedy about music as a beacon of hope, fueling a romance of sorts between Flora and Jeff, and giving a 14-year-old his voice. Funny, sweet and down-to-earth; Hewson is very good as the mom who wishes her life had taken a different path 14 years ago.
2023-Ireland-U.S. 97 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Anthony Bregman, John Carney, Peter Cron, Rebecca O’Flanagan, Robert Walpole. Written and directed by John Carney. Music: John Carney, Gary Clark. Cast: Eve Hewson (Flora), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Jeff), Orén Kinlan (Max), Jack Reynor, Sophie Vavasseur, Kelly Thornton.
Last word: “This movie, I don’t think, really is a musical, actually. They’re musically dense movies, and I certainly think Sing Street was a musical and Once in the beginning, but I don’t know if this so much is. I’m a bit tired of the narrative of music films at the moment. All you’ve got to do is believe and dream, and then you’ll have a hit record. And I probably propagated that myth a little bit myself, but I don’t know if I really believe it. Music is so much more interesting than just trying to have a hit record or make it.” (Carney, Los Angeles Times)