Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • 15
  • Comedy, Drama
  • 2009

The Concert

The Concert


Fired for hiring Jewish musicians 30 years ago, Andrei Filipov (Aleksei Guskov) is seriously down on his luck when he seizes the chance to turn the tables and produce the concert to end all concerts


Romanian-born director Radu Mihaileanu comes unstuck with this well-meaning feel-good flick set amidst the rip-roaring thrills and spills of post-communist Russia's classical music community. Aleksei Guskov plays the similarly named Andrei Filipov, a former Great Conductor now working as a lowly cleaner. How the mighty are fallen! But don't worry, it's a noble fall, because Andrei was given the boot by Brezhnev for supporting Jewish musicians, so we know he's one of the good guys...

The meat of the film is some fairly standard getting-the-old-band-back-together shtick that falls flat as often as it warms your heart. Melanie Laurent (pictured) from Inglourious Basterds is the best thing in the film, but her character is woven into the mix via some very strained plotting. The worst thing about The Concert, however, is its cornball obeisance to High Art and its power to transform and uplift. Does anybody (even if they haven't seen A Clockwork Orange) imagine for even a second that classical music is a sort of one-stop wonder-balm for all your spiritual ills?

Finally, a helpful note for readers under the age of 20: a key plot development in The Concert involves a fax. A fax is something people used to use before the internet. Sort of a cross between a photocopier and a walky talkie, a fax machine would print a copy of your document out anywhere in the world that also has a fax machine. They were kind of awful and clunky, much like this film.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Melanie Laurent
  • Director: Radu Mihaileanu
  • Screen Writer: Matthew Robbins
  • Writer (Story): Radu Mihaileanu

In a nutshell

A sentimental comic odyssey keen to wring tears and laughter from a script that can't sustain it, if you played classical music to your unborn child in the hopes of spawning a genius, this one's for you.

by Catherine Bray

Latest from Film4...

  • Film4

    The Salt Of The Earth

    Brazilian documentary about the life of visionary photographer Sebastião Salgado, directed by Wim Wenders and Sebastião's son Juliano Ribeiro Salgado.

  • Film4


    AnnaLynne McCord stars as a teenager with an unhealthy fascination with gore and surgery.

    On Film4: 29 Oct 11:05PM

  • Film4

    Black Cinema Season on Film4

    To tie-in with the launch of the BFIs Black Star season, Film4 presents a celebration of black filmmaking talent both in front of and behind the camera.

  • Film4

    FilmFear on Film4

    This Halloween, Film4 becomes FilmFear. Join us for seven nights of petrifying premieres and classics from the crypt.

  • Channel 4 Blog

    TIFF 2016: Top Ten Editor Michael Leader runs through ten standouts from the Toronto International Film Festival...   The Oath I'd already seen three of the four Film4-backed films screening in Toronto (inc

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Baltasar Kormakur on The Oath

    As his Film4-backed Icelandic thriller The Oath premieres in Toronto, director/writer/actor Baltasar Kormakur speaks with editor Michael Leader about making films in Hollywood, returning to

Register with

Personalise your Film4 experience

  • Set film reminders
  • Build your watchlist
  • Get film suggestions

or Register