5/21/09

The Soloist

In my last post about Sherlock Holmes I mentioned Rubber Ducky Jr's broad portfolio. This is the movie that kept him in the running for dramatic roles. The Soloist is about a schitzophrenic cellist who falls to his disability and consequently drops out of Juliard after being harrased by the voices in his head. He becomes a member of the Los Angeles homeless community and draws reporter Steve Lopez's attention when he fills the air with beautiful violin music using only one string. Lopez writes a human interest story on him and thus begins their troubled friendship.

RDJ has some awesome raw talent which has only previously been portrayed in comic roles. Iron Man gave him the ability to showcase some drama, but it was still light-hearted at the core. The Soloist allowed him to apply his dry mannerisms and quick whit in a moving role as a reporter who ends up getting a little closer to his subject than he wanted.

Jaimie Foxx was awesome, too. As RDJ taught us in Tropic Thunder, it's always difficult to portray the mentally handicapped. Foxx seemed to put a lot of research and thought into his role as Nathaniel Anthony Ayres Jr. He was never a parody and he imbued the character with the sense of realism that a true story deserves.

Ayres and Lopez are both real people. Lopez wrote a book about the handicapped street musician and this movie is based on that.

The thing that keeps Ayres lucid and focused is music. It's the thing that drives the voices from his head. Watching him become entranced by the works of Beethoven made me feel like there was something in music that I would never understand. Something higher than any of us could ever comprehend, and that only a select few, like Ayres, could really appreciate. Growing up in a musical family, I never felt music like this. Whether it was the director's ability to translate that feeling to the screen or the enharent quality if the music combined with the moving talent of Foxx, I couldn't tell you. But I think, maybe, if I could tell you, I would have missed the point.

-- Post From My iPhone