Last night, Marcela and I decided to watch a DVD while she prepared her lessons and graded her work. We wanted something a little less loud and hectic so we put The Hulk away and opted for August Rush instead. That was a great choice.
Without giving too much of the story away, let me give you some of the reasons I really loved this one.
1. It was almost completely family friendly. There was one fist fight portrayed and a little bit of violent behavior portrayed against children, a little boozing by a rock band, no foul language that I remember, no sexual content, and no drug content.
2. It portrayed a case manager played by Terence Howard as an extremely thoughtful individual. He reminded me very much of the people I worked with at CHARLEE and it reminded me of the work I did.
3. It’s a movie about music, REAL music, not some glamorized rock band music. There was a struggling rock band in the movie, but Keri Russel also plays the part of a concert cellist who studied at Juliard.
4. Freddie Highmore who stars as young Evan Taylor/August Rush really nailed the part of a musical child prodigy desperate to be with the parents he never knew.
The plot is pretty simple and beautiful. A teen cellist (Russel) becomes pregnant from an Irish rock artist played by Jonathan Rhys Meyers. The girl is tricked by her father into giving the boy up for adoption and told that the baby died. The baby lives in a group home/orphanage to the age of about 11, then runs away to find his parents despite the warnings of his case manager that his parents may be never found, may be dead, or may not be the best for him. But the boy is special! He hears music everywhere in everything he does. He learns an instrument (guitar, piano, and organ are shown, but it implies that he learns every instrument) in just minutes. He writes music as if he is writing words on a paper. He is taken in by a “street family” whose head, played by Robin Williams, seeks to exploit and control him. Then when he finally gets a break, he is recaptured by “The Wizard” (Williams). His mother learns that the boy is alive so she goes to the child protection agency and tries to locate the boy where she finds out he ran away. The rest of the story is so inspiring and beautiful to me, but I won’t spoil it any further.
If you like music, family, and movies with redeeming qualities and wholesome entertainment, I highly recommend this movie.