What I was awarded with was an incredibly stunning movie that left me not only thoroughly entertained, but also challenged.
The Soloist follows the journey of Los Angeles Times reporter Steve Lopez (Robert Downey Jr) as he discovers that there is more to life around him than just finding the next story to fill the front pages. Set to the background of huge economic and social turmoil in the United States, Steve stumbles across Nathaniel Ayers (Jamie Foxx) a vagrant living on the street with an incredible talent for music.
Once Steve discovers that Nathaniel is an alumni of Julliard he starts to realise that there is a potentially great story to be told, and the chance that through his work he may be able to bring positive change to Nathaniel’s life.
The film works through the very pressing issues of poverty and mental health care, and shows some very stark contrasts between those who are suffering and those who attempt to help.
But that’s where I’m going to stop sharing the story line. This movie is to be experienced and savoured. The cinematography is beautiful, the music is amazing and the visualizations the director takes the audience through in this journey are rich and refreshing.
Throughout the Soloist the audience is transported to a world of classical music, which is beautiful as it is ordered, and then back to the streets of Los Angeles, which often appears desperate and chaotic.
The messages that one walks away with are powerful, and may even change your viewpoint on urban poverty and mental health.
For me this is the most thought provoking I’ve encountered this year and if your a lover of music or want to see a commentary on modern society, then this is well worth setting aside an quiet evening for.
Reviewed by: Skip Parker
Release date: January 7th, 2010
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Director: Wright, Joe
Length (Minutes): 105
Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Catherine Keener, Jamie Foxx, Stephen Root, Tom Hollander, Justin Martin, Angela Featherstone, Rachael Harris, Marissa Ghavami, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Justin Rodgers Hall, Matt Besser, Michael Bunin, David Jean Thomas, Ilia Volokh, Meggan Anderson, Alejandro Patino, Maggie Wagner
Studio: Universal Pictures