First, I'm going to make a list of things I want to see in a movie:
  • Great acting
  • A solid marriage
  • Unpredictability
  • Relatable characters
  • Cute kids
  • Heartwarming plot
  • Wonderful music
  • Wise old folks
  • Fantastic success
  • Brilliant people doing audacious things
  • Fulfilled hopes and dreams
  • Beautiful horses
  • A happy ending
This wonderful Swiss/German film has everything but the horses! Winner of the AFI Film Festival Audience Award and submitted for Best Foreign Film to the 2006 Academy Awards, this sure-fire winner will delight you from beginning to end.

As a result of a rave review from one of you (in Nevada) on my JayFlix list, I checked this out of the library. The only actor with whom I am familiar is the great Bruno Ganz ("The Boys From Brazil," "Bread and Tulips" and "The Manchurian Candidate" - 2004). I have admired his work for many years. You wouldn't recognize any of the other names, so I won't waste your time. I will say that the little boy who portrays Vitus at age four is cuter than a button and the boy who portrays him later is a piano protégé in his own right!

The story revolves around a young genius. You first meet him when he is four, already reading books and the newspaper. The boy has an IQ of 180, is a piano protégé, is a mathematical whiz and is deeply unhappy. All he really wants is to be "normal." His teachers resent being ridiculed and his classmates resent his obvious superiority. His only respite from his demanding life is time spent with his undemanding grandfather (Ganz) in his leaky old woodshop, making boomerangs and fantasizing about flying airplanes.

His parents have a solid marriage and the boy is secure in their love, but he clearly sees how much his mother wants him to succeed with his music. His rebellions are par for the course, but also a little bit different from those of the average kid. His father is dealing with the ups and downs of the corporate world while his mother tries to keep the child focused on his piano. Neither parent pays much attention to the boy's other gifts or his frustrations.

Things change after the boy falls from a balcony and suffers a head injury. The unpredictable twists and turns had me deeply involved every step of the way! No car chases, no blowie uppie stuff, no sweaty bodies, not one gun is fired and no fruit baskets were damaged making this film. ...smile...

Check it out! (Rent "Flicka" if you want to see horses...I did...)