Follow Your Star
Release Date: June 29, 2007
Starring: Teo Gheorghiu, Julika Jenkins,
Urs Jucker, and Bruno Ganz
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 123 minutes
Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics
Director: Fredi M. Murer
Executive Producer: None
Producer: Christian Davi, Christof
Neracher, and Fredi M. Murer
Writer: Peter Luisi, Fredi M. Murer,
and Lukas B. Suter
Address Comments To:Michael Barker, Tom Bernard and Marcia Bloom
Sony Pictures Classics
(Sony Pictures Entertainment)
550 Madison Avenue, 8th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Phone: (212) 833-8833
Fax: (212) 833-8844
Web Page: www.sonyclassics.com
At first, Vitus takes pride in his musical talent. As he gets older and finds it difficult to fit in with the other kids, Vitus just wishes to be normal. Reality hits him hard when his father begins having financial problems, causing tension at home. The boy’s only refuge is his grandfather, the one person in whom he fully confides. When his grandfather begins having problems of his own, Vitus decides to take matters into his own hands.
VITUS is very well directed. Director Fredi M. Murer convincingly portrays Vitus as a boy who is far more intuitive than most adults, yet we never forget that Vitus is still just a boy. The movie starts out in a stride and never stops, each scene propelling the movie exponentially forward.
The cast is exceptional. The chemistry between Teo Gheorghiu and Bruno Ganz, who play Vitus and his grandfather, respectively, is particularly excellent. The duo has a number of very touching scenes and is the highlight of the movie. Gheorghiu does very well in his role as Vitus and, interestingly enough, is a musical prodigy himself. There is no cutting away; we see young Gheorghiu playing the piano each and every time. The filmmakers must have had quite a task of finding an actor who could both act and play such complicated pieces of music.
Running around two hours, VITUS does not feel either rushed or overly long. It is solidly written, with a great blend of drama and some genuinely funny moments to ease the tension. The reviewers went in with average expectations and left with those expectations far exceeded.
At first, some viewers may be turned away because of the subtitles, but don’t let that discourage you. Soon into the film, you will forget you are reading subtitles.
This is not a movie for everyone, as it is obviously not an edge-of-your-seat action thriller that mass audiences will want to see. As well, this film is not appropriate for younger viewers. Not only may the story bore children, it has mild language, a brief lighthearted mention of the sex drive, and two cases of underage drinking. It also has a Romantic worldview encouraging Vitus to follow his heart, to the point of fooling his parents. Thus, parents should know that Vitus is a rebellious child who sometimes disrespects his parents and teachers and takes pride in doing so. However, Vitus is sympathetic and merely gets carried away because of a combined brilliance, a flair for using logic and wit to bust fallacies, and a naïve nature. Also, some moral elements extolling love, selflessness and family help to make VITUS a powerful, charming and sublime experience.
Director Fredi Murer has struck gold with VITUS. Filled with drama, wit, and joy from beginning to end, it presents a very human, exhilarating perspective of love, loss, family affection, and following your dreams.
VITUS is high quality movie filled with drama, wit, and joy from beginning to end. However, this movie is not for children. It has mild foul language and a brief sexual discussion, though nothing explicit. It also has a Romantic worldview encouraging Vitus to follow his heart, to the point of fooling his parents. Some moral elements extolling love, selflessness and family, however, help to make VITUS a charming experience of love, loss, and family affection. VITUS is one of the best-made movies in the last few years, but MOVIEGUIDE® recommends caution for pre-teenagers.