John Carney directs the story of a boy growing up in Dublin during the 1980’s. Forced into changing schools and a strained family life, conor has a lot to deal with but then he meets a mysterious girl and creates a band just to impress her.
On the face of it Sing Street sounds like my kind of film so why did I miss it when it came out in cinemas last year. Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when I started seeing posts about it from friends and I knew that I had to see it and I am so glad that I did.
Sing Street is set against the backdrop of family and financial troubles, the latter of which sees Conor (Ferida Walsh-Peelo) forced into a brutal christian brothers school. Conor has a tough time fitting in but that all changes when he spots the enigmatic girl Raphina (Lucy Boynton) standing outside the school gates.
Music and the emerging form of the music video are big parts of this film. Conor relies on his big brother Brendan (Jack Reynor) for the musical knowledge, even parroting it back to gain the support of Eamon (Mark McKenna). Eamon is some kind of music savant with the ability to play any instrument, watching them write and play together was a joy to watch.
Another big part of this film is the family drama, many fans of a certain HBO show won’t fail to recognise Robert (Aidan Gillen) who plays the dad. The arguments between him and his wife Penny (Maria Kennedy) are best explored through the impact it has on their kids who use their love for music as an escape from the troubles at home.
The newly formed band start off with covers but quickly learn that if they are going to get anywhere then they will have to write their own material. There music videos start of in a similar way but as the film moves on they become more ambitious and dreamlike as with an incredibly dreamlike sequence reminiscent of the prom sequence in back to the future.
As well as all the great music used in this film there are several songs written especially for this film. Songs such as UP, Beautiful Sea and Brown shoes are all incredible to listen to but my favourite song of them all has got to be ‘Drive it Like you Stole It’. This song came up on my spotify the other day and it instantly put a smile on my face.
Conor’s presence at the school brings him into direct conflict with two characters, first is the school bully Barry (Ian Kenny) and second is Br Baxter (Don Wycherley). Both of these actors give brilliant performances and it was interesting to see the different impacts that they had on both Conor and the band as a whole.
Just as things are going well problems start to arise while I don’t want to spoil anything here. I will say that in these moments we get some incredible performances and it is this that leads to a fantastic finale. It shows us a world in which music is powerful enough to transform us into something greater and that is what it does for our main characters.
Sing Street is a really good film full of incredible performances, humour and emotion. Not forgetting its phenomenal soundtrack that includes several amazing songs written just for the film. I had a great time watching this film and I know that you will enjoy it too.