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4.3 out of 5 stars80
4.3 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 3 April 2011
Country Strong opens with the baritone vocals of Garrett Hedlund the young actor with no previous singing experience. As he sings the Merle Haggard classic 'Silver Wings' you realize he is blessed with a voice male country singers would die for. kris kristofferson mixed with Randy Travis and some Townes Van Zandt thrown in. Apparently Hedland had never played guitar before and did not want to use a 'hand model' strumming away. He spent time learning and honing his voice and playing.

Aside from Tim McGraw (previously played Hedlund's father in Friday Night Lights) who is one of Nashville's country superstars along with his wife Faith Hill, it's clear from interviews that none of the main cast had a country music background. Even Shana Feste does not talk about a love of country music. This makes the movie even more surprising.

Leighton Meester's character works less well. She is sweet but it's hard to picture her in the role of aspiring country singer. She sounds less convincing vocally than the others, a kind of pop-voice.

As the film develops, you feel the pain of Kelly Canter (Paltrow). It may be a familiar story of alcohol abuse and 'demons' but there is a twist. Canter fell off stage and lost the child she was carrying with her husband played by Tim McGraw. She had a high blood-alcohol level. Paltrow learned to sing and play guitar and the result is the most pitch perfect country music voice.

'Country Strong' the title track is a beautiful, warm and inspirational track that Paltrow sang live at the CMA Awards in Nashville, 2010. She bowled over the audience and any potential critics.

It's an uplifting, impeccably acted performance by the 4 leading actors. The only sadness is - why are there not more movies that combine country music with a Hollywood performance?
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on 5 February 2012
As a starter, the music in this film is great. The actors all deliver strong performances too. The story line holds you throughout the film with a lot of will they? won't they relating to all the characters. Gwyneth Pawltrow portrays her character with feeling and real emotion, and as a viewer you can feel what she's going through, and develop an emotional link with her.
For me this is a good weekend afternoon film, and is certainly worth a second viewing.
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on 9 October 2012
This DVD is absolutely heart breaking. My heart ached for days after watching it.

It is about whah happens when a couple put fame before love. And what happens if they choose love. The cost and consequences can be absolutely devastating. It is about what deep love is and what shallow love is.

I will not give away any more, because in those sentences above you have the nugget of the whole film. But the truth that it shows will make your heart break. If only some people would realize that love is not about pushing, money or fame, but about truly putting the other person first, and not thinking of the rewards for yourself; or living your life through them.

The musical score is wonderful

Recommended if you want to cry and be absolutely done in at the end of the movie. Especially the end, is extremely painful to watch.
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on 31 August 2011
Absolutely amazing, Garrett hudland is gorgeous!!! All of my friends loved it as well, so a very good buy. I loved the songs, even though I am not a country music fan.The whole cast was perfect for each role. But, all in all, a very good film.
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on 17 September 2011
Great film. Gwyneth Paltrow is not only beautiful she has a fantastic voice. Well worth watching. I loved it..... Even if you are not into country music, you will love this film. Highly recommended.....
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Country Strong represents an excellent fusion of a Hollywood movie with some quality country music. The storyline which focuses on the stress of fame on a relationship is credible and underpinned by good acting. As the story unravelled it held my attention from a human interest perspective rather than a sense of suspense. I think the country music which accompanies the film genuinely enhances it but isn't just there as window dressing for a second rate film. I bought a further copy of this Blu-Ray disc as a gift for a country music fan and they enjoyed it too. Recommended.
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on 10 July 2012
A moving story of a fading female country singer (Paltrow) and her manager husband (The Mr. Tim McGraw), setting out to get her career back on track after her period in rehab where she has fallen for a young therapist who also plays guitar. Result one last tour to culminate in a huge concert in Dallas. The therapist ends up as supporting act along with a little miss no-body who is convinced she is destined for stardom.
The story twists and turns, partners are swapped, and it culminates in the final concert.
The music is fabulous, a mix of Tim McGraw, Faith Hill and LeeAnn Womack but the stars also sing and Paltrow not only acts the part excellently but her voice is fantastic. A great film, but for anyone into modern country, a must see.
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on 1 September 2011
After the spectacularly brilliant 'Crazy Heart', I awaited the release of 'Country Strong' with slightly bated breath! Regrettably the storyline is a bit weak and overdone and the script could have been a lot 'tighter'. Having said that however, the movie is redeemed by the wonderful soundtrack and the radiantly beautiful Gwynneth who also sings like an angel and has a real feel for the country genre. She is ably supported by Garret Hedlund and Leighton Meester who also sing really well and manage to get a country 'twang' in their interpretations of the songs. Would have been nice if Tim Mcgraw had had a song but I realise that the storyline didn't support this. 8/10.
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on 3 October 2012
Country Strong is an awesome film, great music, great story, and emotion! loved it, 10/10! All the Actors/singers are fantastic,I loved every minute! A must buy for any Country Music scene Fans.
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on 12 April 2015
It's not a bad film, I enjoyed it, especially the parts set in Nashville as I have a soft spot for Music City. An unexpected bonus was seeing the wonderful Chris Scruggs as part of Beau's band. I saw him perform in person at The Stone Fox in Nashville and it was an amazing experience. The problem I had with the movie was that I found it hard to sympathise with Kelly's struggle, it does not explore or explain why she became an alcoholic in the first place. Lots of looking back and "remember when we were that happy" so what went wrong to kick off the problem drinking? Still glad I watched it though and the music is great.
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