Grand Piano [DVD]
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Eugenio Mira directs this thriller starring Elijah Wood, John Cusack and Kerry Bishé. Tom Selznick (Wood) is the most talented concert pianist of his generation. However, lately Tom's career has stalled due to crippling bouts of stage fright, which interfere with his ability to perform at the highest level. After seeking help for his issues, Tom returns to the stage for a sold out comeback performance, supported by his wife Emma (Bishé). All is going well until Tom turns the page on his sheet music and finds a threatening message scrawled there. Soon, via an earpiece, Tom is put in touch with his tormenter, Clem (Cusack). Clem assures him that he has a high-powered rifle trained on him and will open fire if Tom hits one wrong note. How will the virtuoso cope under a very different kind of performance pressure?
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Top Customer Reviews
Along for the ride is his wife, who is famous in her own profession, and two friends who are in the audience. The thing is, when he opens his sheet music, instead of getting a fantastic symphony, he gets death threats from someone in the audience who is pointing a gun at him.
And if he doesn't do as he's told, he, and his wife, will be shot at Grosse Point Blank range....
Despite the high concept, it's been done before, and Phone Booth was over the top, and flashily edited, and was bonkers, thanks to Joel Schumacher, but it was entertaining, and was mercifully short.
This has Elijah Wood, woefully miscast as a grand piano master, and features him on the phone to John Cusack, and the rest of the primary cast trying to avoid Alex Winter, who is backstage looking for Keanu.
Its perfunctory stuff, predictable, but not unwatchable.
It just leaves a nasty taste in your mouth, that makes you think that Phone Booth was only good for a lesser class.
At least that has an element of knowing absurdity, this is just absurd. For more evidence, see Wood playing a broken piano with a broken leg on the back of a truck in this.
Now as he starts to play, he gets the message that if he misses a note, he dies...or Emma dies. Neither one was likeable and this was the scenario I was hoping for. So after 20 minutes, I kept wondering, "Is this going to be the whole movie?" 40 minutes go by and this is still the freaking film. At 55 minutes we get a clue as to why this was going on. I really didn't care at this point, I just wanted to see Tom and Emma die a horrible death for talking on their cell phones all the time.
How long is John Cusack on the screen? Don't ask.
I don't understand the rave reviews. It doesn't keep you on the edge of your seat. A boring "thriller."
That might as well be the motto of "Grand Piano," which Hitchcock might have enjoyed watching. Imagine if Brian de Palma made a classical-music version of "Phone Booth" -- while it has a ridiculously implausible conceit at its heart, director Eugenio Mira keeps it harrowing with an ever-expanding cloud of bloodless suspense and a magnificent pair of lead performances.
Five years ago, pianist Tom Selznick (Elijah Wood) choked while playing a very difficult piece. Now he's making his grand comeback with the Philharmonic, on the piano of his late mentor... and he's almost paralyzed with stage fright. It doesn't help that everybody he meets just HAS to remind him of his past screw-up. But as he begins playing, he finds a message scrawled on his notes: "Play one wrong note and you DIE."
And no, it's not a method for overcoming his nerves -- a mysterious man (John Cusack) is truly threatening to kill him and/or his movie-star wife Emma (Kerry Bishé) if he gets ANYTHING wrong, or tries to alert anyone of the threat.
As the evening winds on, the prospective killer speaks to Tom through a bluetooth headpiece, slowly revealing why he wants every note to be perfect. And Tom learns that anyone who crosses this mysterious person will end up dead, even if they have no idea what is going on. Now he must overcome a fear more intense than any stage fright, and find some way of stopping the madman without getting killed...
The weakest part of "Grand Piano" is probably the central conceit.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Really awful! I have no idea what it was about and I sat through every bum-numbingly, boring minute! Wish I had have watched paint dry instead!Published 2 months ago by J.Guido
Great - if you are a pianist, though not so convincing as a storyline; come on, no pianist can be so distracted and yet play so well. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
Watched this film as it was classed as in the Hitchcock style. Yeah right...! Read more
Okay film, nothing special though, the plot tries to over complicate a lot of things and in the end doesnt really make sense, but its quite interesting and bit different at the... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Chris
I was very disappointed when the DVD arrived as not only was the case damaged but it was the French (with English subtitles) version of the film. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Lily G