August Rush: A Modern Day Oliver Twist with a Sprinkle of Justin Bieber

If you’ve ever had your spirits lifted by a song, or your cockles warmed by a melody, then you should check out August Rush. It’s a Dickensian tale about a young boy who sets out to find his parents through the magic of music…

What’s it about? A young boy (Freddie Highmore) who grew up in a children’s home discovers that he has a borderline supernatural talent for music and becomes determined to use his gift to find his parents (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Kerri Russell).

What’s it really about? The magic of music.

Pick if:

  • You’re looking for a family appropriate film
  • You have a soft spot for Oliver Twist stories: Dickens’ story of the little orphan who has to brace a series of misfortunes until he finally realises his dream is an obvious source of inspiration for August Rush. The film even offfers a Fagin-type character in Robin Williams’ dubious “Wizard”
  • You’re not averse to a little melodrama: Lewis’ pining for Lyla and the latter’s quest to find the child she didn’t know she had (it’s complicated, just let the film explain) are real tearjerker plotlines
  • You like modern fairy tales such as Penelope or Big Fish: August Rush uses music in such a powerful way that makes it seem magical
  • Music is really, really important to you

Most memorable quote: “What’s the point in singing? She’s not gonna hear me…”

Most memorable scene: ********************SPOILER*************************

When Lewis passes through a New York City park, he hears Evan busking. The two of them swap guitars and have an impromptu jam session, not realising that they are father and son.

Magic Music Moment: “This Time”, an acoustic performance by lead-actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers, plays over a montage of Lewis and Lyla thinking about each other.

Where can I watch? August Rush is available for streaming on Netflix (click to see full list of countries where the film is available).

August Rush (2007): Directed by Kirsten Sheridan; 1h 54mins; starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers (The Tudors), Keri Russell (The Americans), Freddie Highmore (Finding Neverland), Alex o’ Loughlin (Hawaii 5-0), Robin Williams (Dead Poets Society), Terrence Howard (Empire).

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