If Elijah Wood hits any wrong notes on his piano then John Cusack will shoot him in the face.
This film exists.
Oh, and it’s written by Damien Chazelle (the man behind Whiplash, one of 2014’s most successful flicks).
This movie should be the only movie anyone ever talks about. It is sacred based on its premise alone. But beyond the premise, I found it to be a good watch, therefore am surprised its fallen under the radar even after the success of Whiplash.
I should probably mention that it’s called Grand Piano — the name may suggest a period drama, but no, it’s very much John Cusack threatening to shoot Frodo in the face.
Cusack himself is becoming somewhat of a king of Direct-to-VOD releases. Whereas multiple generations have seen him hold up that boombox in Say Anything, crawl into John Malkovich’s mind*, and survive 2,012 instances of certain death in 2012 — he is now shooting people in the face in the name of musical perfection (making Whiplash‘s J.K. Simmoms seem like less of a hard ass for throwing cymbals at faces).
*if you haven’t seen Being John Malkovich, I can only imagine how confusing that must have been to read.
I’d recommend that, armed only with the knowledge of its fun premise, you give this film a shot. It has a low IMDb rating and Rotten Tomatoes user score but if you’re on board for a tense ride then strap on in. Its also worth noting that Damien Chazelle did the rewrite for the 10 Cloverfield Lane script, which achieved great things with a limited cast & location and is probably my favourite film of 2016 so far.
One last tip: If you want to enhance the viewing experience for Grand Piano, I’d recommend having a friend point a gun at your face for the duration of the movie. You’ll really find yourself connecting to Elijah Wood’s character.