The New Film from Once Director John Carney Is the Perfect Film for Dreamers and Lovers
GLOBAL — Anybody who has ever had a dream or been in love, is going to want to put Begin Again on their watch list. The film stars Keira Knightley as Greta, a British singer-songwriter who travels to New York to support her boyfriend Dave, played by Adam Levine, who’s just landed a major deal with a record label. Greta is not only supportive, she’s talented and the perfect sounding board for Dave, who quickly gets caught up in his career and the entrapments of the music biz.
When everything in Greta’s life seems to be crashing down around her, including a recent break up with Dave, she finds herself being consoled by a friend who convinces her to accompany him to a talent night at a local bar where she sings one of her songs. Her performance is witnessed by Dan (Mark Ruffalo), a washed up music executive who has a penchant for predicting raw talent that can be molded into hit makers. He instantly sees this in Greta. Soon Dave, Greta, and other independent musicians are making music around New York City: in the alley, on roof tops, even in the park.
Knightley and Levine both make debuts in this film, Keira as a singer and Adam as an actor. They’re believable as a couple and Ruffalo’s portrayal as a drunken A&R man is on point. But although Keira, Adam, and Mark are main characters in this film, music has a significant role as well. It’s so prevalent to the story line that it’s almost a character of its own, evidenced by Dave’s experience listening to Greta sing for the first time. He imagines hearing her musical accompaniment, from a piano and bass to hi hat cymbals – non of which are actually part of her performance. But unlike most musically inclined people, Greta is not all that interested in making it to the top of the music charts. However, Dave convinces her to make a demo tape anyway. Working together, they soon learn more about each other as well as themselves.
Although Manhattan serves as a beautiful backdrop to this dramady and the Begin Again soundtrack is easily a chart topper, what makes this movie a hit is the underlying story about love and aspiration. It’s a tale we can all relate to.
Photo credits: The Weinstein Company