Sing Street (2016) – John Carney


Sheer joy.

There were no other words to express my experience with John Carney’s latest film. Sometimes a film comes along at just the right time in your life, and serves to reminds you of something you’ve always known but you kind of need that obvious callback.

And music does that. It doesn’t matter how shite your day to day can be, or what static threatens to overcome you, to connect with a song, to relate to it on an emotional level, it can you lift you up, it can make you feel invincible, it can make you cry, it can make you dance with unrestrained enthusiasm and bliss.

In a year that has seen us already lose two musical giants, Bowie and Prince, music has been on my mind a lot lately, the way it allows me to remember moments, people, to take comfort and to boogie down.

Enter Sing Street, the perfect movie, at the perfect time. Set in the 80s, the last great musical decade, the film follows fifteen year old Connor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo), who along with his siblings is trying to deal with the seemingly inevitable divorce that his parents are on the verge of pursuing, trying to fit in at a new school, and trying to win the girl, Raphina (Lucy Boynton).

And what better way to deal with all these things, than to start a band? And what a time to start a band! Taking influences from the bands his older brother, Brendan (Jack Reynor), introduces him to, The Cure, Duran Duran, Hall & Oates, Connor, and his band of misfits, adopt the name Sing Street and he finds a way to express himself.

And maybe get the girl?


Featuring a wonderful cast, supported by Maria Doyle Kennedy and Aiden Gillen, John Carney not only wrote and directed the film, but also wrote the songs the band create. Filled with brilliant moments that perfectly encapsulate the era of my youth, and anyone who grew up during the time will appreciate it, Connor and his mates discover themselves, and create some fantastic music to accompany it.

The tunes are catchy, and perfectly 80s, from the pop driven Drive It Like You Stole It, to the heart-breaking ballad, To Find You, the young cast are nothing short of fantastic, and even though the story is fairly standard, and you know what has to happen, it still pulls all the right emotions in.

I honestly didn’t want this film to end. I didn’t get up until the last credit rolled, and even then, I went online and bought the wicked soundtrack so that I could carry the experience home with me.

By turns hilarious, and tear-inducing, I can say that this is, by far, the best film I’ve seen this year. It reminds you of the power of music, a four minute escape, that while you have your head phones on you can lift yourself out of the trials and tribulations of your day to day and just be.

From making music videos to standing up to the bully, this is very much a wish-fulfillment film, one everybody can relate to, and with the brilliant soundtrack, this one needs to be seen, and shared.

Sing Street is currently in a limited release, seek it out and find it. It’s totally worth it.


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