A Late Quartet features an indie filmgoer’s dream cast. It stars Christopher Walken, Catherine Keener, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. It also has Mark Ivanir, a former Israeli soldier and street clown, and Imogen Poots.
The movie is about a famous string quartet that has to deal with one of its member’s Parkinson’s disease. Each scene in A Late Quartet is loaded with emotional moments and this might be how it attracted such cast.
Christopher Walken does a good job in A Late Quartet. It’s good to see him play a role that not a psychopath. Some of the most memorable scenes in the movie are when he leads a class of young students.
Philip Seymour Hoffman is correctly casted as one of the supports in A Late Quarter. He plays second fiddle who feels under-appreciated. Christopher Walken and Catherine Keener look a lot older and it is good for the movie.
A movie about a quartet would not be complete without them playing music. While you might notice that they are faking it, the fake-music playing is kept to a minimum. It is nicely done with lots of closeups, long shots, and angles that show the actors’ heads and instruments with the hands out of the frame. Director Yaron Ziberman also spends a lot of time showing the musicians messing with their instrument cases and tinkering with the strings. Each of the main actors had three different musical coaches. That gives a total of 12. It isn’t their fault that the cast members’ playing the instruments didn’t look real.
A Late Quartet is a satisfying movie. It will make the viewer listen to classical music after watching it. But it does make you wonder how professional musicians who have been playing together for 25 years can act like adolescents and start to have spats about power. It is hard to believe that it can happen in real life.