Thursday Movie Picks: Movies about Music/Making Music

This week's theme from Wandering Through the Shelves is movies about making music. The only trick is, you can't use bio pics or movies about real life musicians. Here's what I came up with.

1) Once

This beautiful story about an unnamed Guy and Girl flourishes with the music they make. They only spend one week together, but you just know neither forgot each other after that.

2) Begin Again

Begin Again is one of my favorite movies in recent years, and it's also done by the same director who did Once. He knows how to make movies about struggling musicians for sure, and this one about a singer/songwriter and the man trying to produce the album is perfection.

3) Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Hedwig transitioned from a man to a woman in order to marry an American GI, however his surgery didn't go as planned so now poor Hedwig is playing her music in bars across the U.S while another boyfriend stole her songs and became famous off of them. This film is so fun and has brilliant performances. 

Bonus: This Is Spinal Tap - This was actually the first film that came to mind, but since the guys that played the members of Spinal Tap actually went on tour *as* them, I wasn't sure if it counts. Because doesn't this technically make Spinal tap real musicians? I don't know. The Piano was another that came to mind because the music played in that film is so lovely. 

26 comments:

  1. Hedwig! Great film! My friend loves the stage version and made us all sit and watch the film - glad he did!

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    1. I've never seen the stage version, though I'd like to. It probably makes a hell of a good play.

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  2. I didn't know they made Hedwig into a film? My head is in the sand. I may see Once and I do want to see Begin Again. This is getting love around the blogosphere today

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    1. Yes, Hedwig is a great film too! You should see it.

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  3. You got me with three I haven't seen though I've heard of them all. Love the lead duo of Begin Again so that will be the first one I track down. I'm been meaning to see Hedwig for years, had originally planned to see it in the theatre but circumstances got in the way at the time and its been on my radar ever since but somehow I've never gotten to it. Have to correct that.

    This Is Spinal Tap may bend the rules slightly but I wouldn't say it breaks them, I have one that does the same. It's a fun wacky piece of performance art for sure.

    I tried to find ones that each featured different types of music, classical, jazz, rock and brass. My extra is the one that stretches the rules a bit, it’s not a strict bio but is based on the band whose music is used in the film.

    Humoresque (1946)-Violin prodigy Paul Boray (John Garfield) is scraping by because his temper and impatience with others less talented than he keeps getting in his way. One night performing at a party he meets Helen Wright (Joan Crawford), a neurotic socialite on her third husband who takes him under her wing and turns him into a star at great cost to them both. Amazing music, beautiful noirish photography and perhaps Crawford's career best performance.

    Blues in the Night (1941)-"Jigger" Lane's jazz band is so down on their luck they are catching a lift in a boxcar when they befriend a gangster, Del Davis who happens to run a roadhouse and offers them a job. What seems at first a break is just the start of their troubles. Del's moll Kay takes a fancy to Leo, one of the band members, causing much pain to his wife, the band's singer Character. Jigger tries to distract her but is driven to madness by Kay's cruelty and things only go downhill from there. Atmospheric music drama, not a musical. Good cast including Priscilla Lane, Jack Carson and in a rare acting role future director Elia Kazan as one of the boys in the band.

    Eddie and the Cruisers (1983)-An ambitious young reporter (Ellen Barkin) latches onto the story of the mysterious death of rock legend Eddie Wilson (Michael Pare). Through her research and the reminiscences of former members of Eddie’s band she begins to uncover hidden facts that make her question the known facts of the band’s rise and his demise. A pastiche of the legends of James Dean, The Doors and Bruce Springsteen this rock & roll drama produced a soundtrack album by John Caffrey & the Beaver Brown Band that was far more successful than the movie ever was.

    Honorable Mention-Brassed Off (1996)-The coal miners in a northern England town play in a brass band which is as old as the mine itself. Now when it is faced with closure the band members pull together to offer support and a chance at survival. Great music.

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    1. I haven't seen any of your three either. I'm bad with 40's movies. lol
      Yeah, Spinal Tap was pushing it. Thank you for sharing yours!

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  4. Once is perfection, as is the stage show based on the film. Begin Again is just lovely. And Hedwig ROCKS. Great picks!

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  5. Great picks! Once and Begin Again... can't go wrong with those. I'm still so in love with Begin Again.

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    1. Same here. Especially when I was finding gifs for it, I really need to watch that movie again.

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  6. Haven't seen any of these. Hedwig is one I keep saying I'm going to watch, but never do. More love for Begin Again. Wow. Guess I'm going to have to sack up and see this one.

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    1. Yes. See all of them, but especially Begin Again. It's so great.

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  7. I've been meaning to watch Once and Hedwig! Begin Again was a great film, loved Knightley and Ruffalo in it. Great picks!

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    1. I hope you like them when you do, they're so wonderful. Thank you! :)

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  8. HEDWIG!!!!! I fucking love that movie. I got a motherfuckin' angry inch!!!!

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  9. Ugh, I love Once so friggin much. THAT SONG!
    - Allie

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    1. Yes! This is why I love the Oscars having Best Original Song performances. I never would've seen Once if I didn't fall in love with this song when they performed it there.

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  10. I was obsessed with Neil Patrick Harris' Tony Performance of Hedwig for a long time. Funnily enough though I still need to see the movie! Begin Again is great. Nice picks!

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    1. NPH would make a good Hedwig. I'd love to see the stage version.

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  11. I so one to see Begin Again because I knew the same guy did Once and I love Once.

    I so wouldn't have thought about The Piano, but that would have been a great pick.

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    1. I'm glad you thought The Piano would be a good fit. I worried it would be too much of a stretch.

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  12. You went full John Carney. Nice. Never saw Hedwig, but I've always been interested in seeing that one.

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    1. Well, he's good. lol I hope you get a chance to see Hedwig.

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  13. I haven't seen Hedwig yet, but YES to the rest of these! Carney all the way!

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    1. Hedwig is a great little film. You should check it out.

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