Thursday, 2 July 2009

Music Within


Okay, people are starting to wonder if I ever watch movies anymore. The sad answer is - not enough. And it's summer. Not to be too negative, but part of the reason is that on a couple of occasions when we had the opportunity to go to a theatre, I couldn't find anything playing that I wanted to see.

It's also easier to reflect on a movie that was either great or lousy, and the dvd's I've been watching have usually been neither. So here are a few thoughts on one of those in-between kind of movies. Music Within is an interesting movie and the viewers and reviewers seem to have been relatively kind to it. It's a true story about a man, Richard Pimental, deafened by the war who becomes an important advocate of disability rights. It's a good story worth knowing.

For the most part, however, the movie doesn't do anything to be more than ok. The one exception is the relationship between Richard and a man with CP he becomes friends with at college, which is a highlight. Otherwise it oversimplifies the story and falls into some predictable traps. One of those is focusing on a couple of jerky reactions to disabled individuals - both undoubtedly true stories - but they hardly seem to be representative reactions even in those days. The scene in the restaurant is one example, but if you're listening closely you realise later that they had eaten in this restaurant on many occasions in the past, apparently without incident. This is misleading for a true story in a way that I do not grant license for effect. Another complaint is that when you watch the special features and listen to the real Richard Pimental tell his story (which is worth doing), you see that he is way funnier than in the movie. Why not use that?

So I'll give it *** just to signify that it's worth watching, but it was something of a disappointment.

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