Boychoir tells the story of Stet, a troubled 11-year-old orphan from a small Texas town, that ends up at a Boy Choir school in New York after the death of his single-mum.
Not to sure what to expect of this film. I’m a fan of a lot of Dustin Hoffman’s work and respect Kathy Bates enough as an actress to appreciate her cameo within the film, despite it falling flat. Maybe it was just the fact that there isn’t much original in the film as it explores a familiar story that continues in a predictable fashion.
There are a few points that stuck out while watching this film – one was the fact that it failed to develop the main characters. Yes, Stet, our main character, is troubled and we as an audience get that. But what I’m concerned about is that we don’t really feel it emotionally. It’s not very clearly depicted. What has made him so troubled? When we see him fighting with his schoolmates, we see that he is angry and sad with music remaining important to him. But why does music mean so much to him? Does he even like singing? How did the principal find out about his talent or even manage to have connections to convince one of the top music schools to make a special trip to audition Stet? Even when Stet manages to successfully find a place within the school, what makes it so important for the school to remain on top? Passion? Pride?
Another point was the focus on was the students reaching of the high “D.” Even if your knowledge is limited in music, it can be generally agreed that musicians are recognised because of their ability and talent to perform music beautifully and that connects with us emotionally on some level. Pavarotti is an example of this as he was known to be able to sing in the higher register powerfully but those who listened to his music liked to hear him sing because of his ability to connect with his audience. It would’ve been so much nicer for us as an audience to listen to the final performance of the film to music that could really emphasise Stet’s voice.
What I do like, however, is setting a film in a primarily choir focussed school as I have never seen a film with an idea such as this one before but the fact that the characters continue down a well trodden journey brings it down.
Boychoir, unfortunately, is another film lost amongst others.