Sing Street – ★ ★ ★ ★ DVD Review
In order to get somewhat caught up, my reviews are becoming more “short and sweet” than I would like, but I think it’s the only way I’ll get them done these days.
Set in Ireland in the 1980s, Conor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) is having a difficult time, his parents are divorcing, he’s trying to fit in at a new Catholic high school, and he has to deal with bullies. On top of this, he sees the girl of his dreams (Raphina played by Lucy Boynton) standing across the street from the school, and one day he works up enough nerve to talk to her. Raphina tells Conor that she’s a model, which is just fine because Conor’s band is looking for a model to be in their new music video. A perfect match right? Except that Conor doesn’t have a band…. But the allure and the refuge of music is universal. Conor makes friends as he recruits members for the band and even turns some of his bullying enemies to his side as roadies and bouncers, but the tougher task is to get the girl.
The look and feel of Sing Street was very authentic to me. It really felt like we were in the 80s. I was never a big fan of 80s music, I tend to listen to 60s and 70s myself, but I could still appreciate how good and how fitting the music was. The music was great, and not just the covers but the original songs for the film too. I was pleasantly surprised that even the smaller characters of Sing Street were well developed. Conor’s older brother Brendan (Jack Reynor) could easily have been seen as a “throwaway” character but he was handled well and as such was an important character in Conor’s growth. The members of the band were an eclectic mix of characters too, and again helped elevate everything because they as well were developed properly. Overall the film was a fairly typical coming of age story. Yes, it was touching and funny but what really sets it apart is the music, and the surprising realism of the situations.
Sing Street was written and directed by John Carney who also wrote and directed Once and Begin Again. I’ve been meaning to watch Once for a while now, and now I think I have extra motivation.
Bottom Line: A great mix of nostalgia and heart made Sing Street a winner for me.