Moments before his comeback performance, a concert pianist who suffers from stage fright discovers a note written on his music sheet.
‘Grand Piano’ tells the tale of Tom, one of the greatest pianists alive, who unfortunately five years ago froze when attempting to play a supposedly unplayable piece as a result of stage fright and after facing scrutiny from many stepped down from his career. Now, five years later following the passing of his mentor, Tom agrees to make another attempt and play a concert, even having his mentor’s favorite piano brought to the hall for him to use in the show. While Tom can’t help but feel he is a disappointment and hasn’t earned the right, once the show begins he realizes he is being watched. A man is keeping tabs on him and ready to drop Tom or his wife in the blink of an eye if Tom doesn’t do what he requires. Now Tom must play the show of his life, the barrel of a rife aimed his way ready to in fact end his life should he so much as play one wrong key.
‘Grand Piano’ is an absolutely brilliant film in pretty much every regard and easily one of the best films so far this year. Everything from the set, surroundings, down to the movements of the camera as they capture everything around them, even the exterior shots of buildings have a true grandeur beauty to them that continually brought a smile to my face. It is intense, fast moving and continues to bring surprises along the way.
Eugenio Mira does a flawless job helming ‘Grand Piano’ and Elijah Wood and John Cusack deliver performances at the top of (and possibly even above) their game. I must say that I never realized just how much power and intensity John Cusack could deliver with his voice alone. While I’ve been a fan of both Wood and Cusack for some time I must say that both of them have gone above and beyond in their performances here and they were both absolutely extraordinary. It was also a lot of fun to see Alex Winter in a film, as many fellow Bill & Ted fans likely know he hasn’t been in much over the last couple of decades and while he certainly wasn’t the high point of the film, he did hold his own quite sufficiently with this enormous talent.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Grand Piano’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.40:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video quality looks pretty great for the most part. All of the scenery and backgrounds look tremendous in this film and even the surrounding exterior building shots have a beautiful uniqueness to them that is really brought to life wonderfully with this high definition video presentation. Some blurriness is noticeable on the top borders of the screen at moments when the curtain is in full view, but as a whole everything looks pretty good and I think most will be quite satisfied.
The Blu-Ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. While there is not a lot of real overbearing activity from the rear speakers, a number of moments do nicely take advantage of the multichannel soundtrack, such as individuals yelling from afar or crowd noise. The real high point of this lossless soundtrack would have to be the score which is quite gorgeous and sounds discrete and flawless here on the Blu-Ray release.
It was quite a pleasant surprise to find that the Blu-Ray release of ‘Grand Piano’ contains a pretty impressive collection of both exciting and informative bonus content. Included on the release are a number of featurette’s including: ‘The Making of Grand Piano’ ‘Soundtrack’ ‘Coaches’ ‘Following Eugenio’ ‘Stunts’ ‘Visual Effects’ ‘Wayne’s Shot’ all of which give an extraordinarily in depth look at the overall making of the film and just how much effort went in to its production from those both in front of and behind the camera. Also included on the release are quite extensive interviews with the director and Elijah Wood plus more!
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Film Rating: 10/10
Disc Rating: 9.5/10
‘Grand Piano’ is now available to own on Blu-Ray & DVD from Magnet Releasing/ Magnolia Home Entertainment.