Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • 15
  • Comedy, Drama
  • 2009

The Concert

The Concert

Synopsis

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

About

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

    We Bought a Zoo

    A widowed father played by Matt Damon moves to the South Californian country and purchases a zoo with his family

    On Film4: 6 Sep 6:25PM

  • Film4

    The Nebraskan

    Philip Carey stars as a calvary scout who attempts to make peace with the Sioux Indians

    On Film4: 8 Sep 11:00AM

  • Film4

    The Host on Film4

    Body-snatching aliens called Souls have invaded Earth, forcing the last few unpossessed humans into hiding. When a sweet-natured Soul called Wanderer is inserted into feisty teenager Melanie Stryder, the alien quickly discovers that her presence is anyt

  • Film4

    Savages on Film4

    When Ben (Aaron Johnson) and Chon (Taylor Kitsch), who run a peaceful marijuana dealing outfit in Southern California, are told by the Mexican Baja Cartel that they must collaborate, they resist, and are quickly drawn into an unevenly matched gang war. Dr

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Michael Leader¿s 20 LFF 2015 recommendations

    Site Editor Michael Leader rounds out our team's picks for this year's London Film Festival... This time last year, I picked a mixture of already-seen and the dying-to-see from the LFF¿s 2014 line-up.

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Beth Webb's 12 London Film Festival 2015 recommendations

    The 59th BFI London Film Festival runs 7th ¿ 18th October ¿ here are Film4 editorial assistant Beth Webb's top 12 picks.  We've been a bit spoiled at Film4 this year with six excellent films showing a

Register with Film4.com

Personalise your Film4 experience

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

or Register

Share