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Shine DVD

Shine DVDStarring: Geoffrey Rush, Armin Mueller-Stahl, et al.
Director: Scott Hicks
More Info | Buy online Shine DVD

Jonas Cukierman's Review

You must play as if there's no tomorrow.


One of the greatest stories of overcoming obstacles, Shine is the pinnacle example of good old-fashioned tenacity and persistence in a world that stigmatizes the emotionally needy. Based on the life of Australian Piano virtuoso David Helfgott, the film takes us on a journey of anger, relationships, triumph and forgiveness from beginning to end. After a growing up with an abusive father and suffering a nervous breakdown, Helfgott faces the struggle having been in and out of institutions for the greater part of his life. Trying to piece his life back together he rediscovers his talent and begins to realize the fact he has just as much right to be happy and successful as anybody else. The storyline and director keep the audience open-eyed until the very last moment where we are allowed to witness the subtle but unmistakable climax. Geoffrey Rush, who portrays the role of Helfgott during his adult life, performed all music as seen (no hand doubles) and heard in this exceptional story of the human spirit's capacity to overcome.

From Amazon.com

Amazon.com Editorial Review

This tearjerker by Australian filmmaker Scott Hicks is a surprising story about real-life classical pianist David Helfgott, an Australian who rose to international prominence at a very young age in the 1950s and '60s, and suffered a psychological collapse after enduring years of abuse from his father (Armin Mueller-Stahl). Hicks has three very fine actors portraying Helfgott at different stages of his life, including the adorably wry and goofy Noah Taylor (Flirting), who takes up the character's teen years, and Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush, giving a great performance playing the musician as a schizophrenic adult. Despite the Helfgotts' compromised psychological health, Shine is hardly a depressing experience. If anything, the story is really about how long one person's life can take to make glorious sense of itself. Sir John Gielgud, in golden form, plays Helfgott's teacher. The DVD release presents the film in its widescreen format, and also includes a Q&A with director Hicks and Rush's Golden Globes acceptance speech.


Tom Keogh

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