2/16/2013

Le concert, Final de pelicula

Le concert
Le Concert is a 2009 French comedy film by Radu Mihăileanu starring Aleksei Guskov, Mélanie Laurent and Miou-Miou. It won the Best Original Score and Best Sound awards at César Awards 2010. It was also nominated for two Magritte Awards in the category of Best Co-Production and Best Editing for Ludo Troch in 2011, and Best Foreign Film at the 68th Golden Globe Awards.
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Plot
A former world-famous conductor of the Bolshoi Theatre orchestra, known as "The Maestro", Andrey Simonovich Filipov, had had his career publicly broken by Leonid Brezhnev for defending Jewish musicians and now is reduced to being an alcoholic working as a mere janitor in the theatre where he once conducted.
While cleaning his boss' office he intercepts an official invitation from the prestigious Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris to replace a concert with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra that was canceled at the last minute. Filipov comes up with a plan to reunite his old orchestra, composed of old Jewish and Gypsy musicians - who also have been reduced to make a living as movers or taxi drivers - to perform in Paris and complete a performance of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto, which was interrupted 30 years earlier by former KGB Agent Ivan Gavrilov, who is enrolled by Filipov in his scheme as the orchestra's manager and is actively and efficiently supporting Filipov's plan, much to the dismay and suspicion of Aleksandr 'Sasha' Abramovich Grossman (the orchestra's main cellist), because it turns out that Gavrilov has his own agenda for the Paris trip.
Gavrilov and Filipov demand several conditions from the Châtelet, that they are forced to accept, since the concert with the Bolshoi is significantly less expensive; one of those conditions is that the solo violinist is Anne-Marie Jacquet, who famously has never played Tchaikovsky's concerto because she is afraid of it, but has long dreamt of playing it with the Bolshoi and particularly with Filipov - whose fame outside of Russia has not diminished -; her agent, Guylène de La Rivière, who is also Anne-Marie's adoptive mother, is reluctant to allow that, because she is acquainted with Filipov and his past, but Anne-Marie insists and she has no option but to accept. The orchestra is also forced to accept the sponsorship of an openly mafia boss who likes to play the cello, despite the fact that he does so terribly and who is part of the orchestra.
Once in Paris, the entire orchestra disappears partying and raising money in other jobs such as taxi drivers, movers or translators. The unprofessionalism of the Russian musicians and Anne-Marie's own impression that the performance serves as a means of catharsis for Filipov, forces Anne-Marie to call off the concert, but Sasha convinces her to come to the theater because the Concert holds the key of Anne-Marie's past and her parents, whom she has never met but she believes them to be scientists who died during her infancy in the Alps. As it turns out Filipov and his wife Irina were best friends with Leia and Yitzhak Strum, also Jewish musicians; Leia was an accomplished violinist and the soloist at the time of the interrupted concert thirty years before in Moscow. After the public humiliation that they suffered under Gavrilov and the entire Brezhnev règime, the couple spoke openly against the government in Radio Free Europa, an American radio station that was banned in the former USSR, as a result they were deported to Siberia where they spent the rest of their lives. Leia, Anne-Marie's mother, lost her reason and played the concert in her imagination every day for her husband until her death in 1981, which was followed by his six months later. Baby Anne-Marie managed to escape with Guylène, at the time a representative of a visiting French orchestra, because she was hidden away in a cello case at the behest of Irina, Filipov and Sasha.
At the very last moment the entire orchestra, after receiving a SMS message from Filipov that they should play in honor of Leia, appears at the Theatre despite the fact that not a single rehearsal has taken place. In the meantime, the real manager of the Bolshoi, who happened to be vacationing in Paris and learned about the concert by chance, appears at the theatre to prevent the performance, but he is tricked by Gavrilov who locks him in a broom closet. The concert has a wobbly beginning due to the lack of rehearsals, but they all manage to reach Filipov's ideal spontaneous harmony once Anne-Marie mesmerizes everyone with her magnificent interpretation of the solo part, which she studied on her mother's annotated score. The concert is a huge success and Filipov is able to restart his career as a conductor of the new "Andrey Filipov Orchestra" along with Anne-Marie, who joins him in a world tour.

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