i saw an amazing movie on the flight up to vancouver the other day, called once, starring Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová.
it’s the story of a dublin busker (hansard) who works in his aging father’s vacuum repair store during the day, but hits the streets of dublin daily to play his guitar and sing his songs. he befriends a young immigrant single mother (irglova), who soon becomes his musical partner, foil and muse. both are in strained relationships (he with a former girlfriend who has moved to london, and she with a disinterested husband who didn’t move to dublin with her) and work to figure those out in the midst of their growing friendship and potential romance. the ending is honest, not predictable, and definitely not hollywood.
the two are both (in real life) actual musicians, and all the songs in the movie are their own. hansard is an amazing song-writer, and i have fallen in love with the songs (and downloaded the soundtrack from itunes). irglova has a beautiful voice, and is a captivating actor, bringing a fresh innocence that is spellbinding.
the movie is actually billed as a “musical”, because they perform many full-length versions of songs throughout. the songs are so good, i found myself ready with anticipation for the next song (whereas, in many “musicals” on film, the songs seem like filler). the movie won the audience choice award at sundance last year, and i can see why. i totally want to watch it multiple times.
find this movie. buy it from amazon if you have to. it really is worth it.