18.9 C
Byron Shire
May 9, 2021

Performance – film review

Latest News

Join Clarkes Beach paddle out this weekend to stop massive oil and gas field project

Hundreds of local surfers and water-lovers will paddle out at Clarke’s Beach over the weekend to protest against a massive oil and gas field proposed for the NSW coast.

Other News

What’s going on with gas?

David Lowe According to the prime minister, we’re in the midst of a ‘gas-led recovery’. Until about five minutes ago,...

Council won’t save our beach

Cr Jan Hackett, Byron Bay Byron Shire Council refuses to take any action to save our once world-class beach, until...

From go to whoa – Norco Primex expo covers it all

Norco and Primex are bringing a three-day sustainable farming and primary industry expo to you.

Interview with Madeleine West

Madeleine West is a nationally acclaimed actress who is one of the many talents who lives in our region. Not just a soap star (some might know her as Dee Bliss from Neighbours), Madeleine has an extensive performance training background and she’s going to be sharing her Theatresports expertise with kids at the Byron Comedy Fest.

Lismore Council set to increase fees, cut costs in a bid to balance budget

Lismore City Council is set to increase fees and charges and cut spending in an attempt to overcome a $19.5m operating deficit.

Come and try basketball in Byron

The next generation of female basketball players, with coordinator Karen Irwin, turned up to a ‘come and try day’...


Film review by John Campbell

Burly Phillip Seymour Hoffman as a violinist in a famous string quartet? It might have been more plausible, I thought, to present the bloke as an Olympic sprinter in spray-on lycra. Christopher Walken (how does he get his hair to stand on end as though he’s just been electrocuted?) on double bass, and Catherine Keener on viola da gamba were only marginally less likely. At least, that was my pre-conception. Incredibly, the conceit works. With Peter (Walken) as its senior member, the group has been together twenty-five years and, if not pushing the envelope stylistically or in their choice of repertoire, they are superb at what they do.

Robert (Hoffman), who has been playing second fiddle to Daniel (Mark Ivanir) all that time, is married to Juliette (Keener) and their daughter, Alexandra (Imogen Poots), is a fragile music student being tutored by Daniel. It’s a mix waiting to implode and the tipping point comes when Peter is diagnosed with the onset of Parkinson’s disease. He reluctantly concedes that his days are numbered and the others in the quartet, forced to confront change, that most challenging nemesis, are suddenly wracked by ancient doubts, foolish lust and thwarted ambition.

Robert’s frustration at never having been considered good enough for the principal violinist’s part boils over, with disastrous consequences. It is a terrific performance from Hoffman as the (justifiably?) sulky artiste, and Ivanir is compelling too as the obsessive, single minded leader who succumbs to a sudden weakness of the flesh, but it is Peter, around whom the maelstrom broils, who is at the heart of the matter. When, I wonder, did Walken become such a fine actor? Confused by all that is beyond his control and at a loss to fully understand how it could have come to this, Peter exhibits an heroic dignity at the group’s tense, elevating final performance. Director Yaron Zilberman enhances a movie of insight and compassion with a fine eye for the classical beauty of the instruments themselves – and the Beethoven is pretty good too.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Man dead after boat capsizes near Yamba

Police say a man has died and a second has been taken to hospital after a boat capsized south of Yamba this morning.

Jonson Street bus shelter gone and an era ended

Byron Shire Council says that the wooden bus shelter on Jonson Street outside the Byron Visitors Centre is being removed today with all bus services operating from the new bus interchange on Butler Street in Byron Bay

Upside down river

Tim Harrington, Lennox Head Letter contributor Richard White (letters 21/4/21) quite correctly identifies the Richmond River as an ‘upside down river’ and nowhere is this more...

Ballina Dragons’ great results at Urunga

The Ballina Dragon Boat Racing Club is a group of paddling people from all walks of life who enjoy being out on the water having fun and keeping fit.