Once ★★★★★

Once is a perfect example of capturing lightning in a bottle...

I started 'Falling Slowly' for John Carney's Once the moment Glen Hansard's falsetto (like discovering Jeff Buckley or Thom Yorke all over again) and Markéta Irglová's eargasmic harmony sent chills down my spine in the films award winning soundtrack moment. This film is all about those moments that are only possible with shared experience through the power of music and the heart yearning for connection, and boy does it all play out in the right tune in this little Irish gem - a film that has somehow eluded me 'til now.

The film in all its simple elegance is many things; a portrait of emerging raw talent, a delicate romance without the cliché and the most perfect modern musical, in that it incorporates its music into its framework in the most honest and realistic way possible without ever feeling heavy-handed. The performances are suitably natural, and I can only compare the films romantic core to Before Sunrise in the way that it allows us to easily form a connection and affection for the two leads.

Once is not just about the music, but it wouldn't be the same without it either, as it adds so many unforgettable moments of passion and tenderness to its narrative. The scene where Markéta's unnamed character sings improvised lyrics to one of his tunes whilst walking through the Dublin night in her pyjamas, or the first recording of 'When Your Mind's Made Up' in a studio environment were major punctuation moments in the film that will long live with me. Excuse me while I hunt down the soundtrack and plan my next viewing...

''So, if you want something
And you call, call
Then I'll come running
To fight, and I'll be at your door
When there's nothing worth running for

When your mind's made up
When your mind's made up
There's no point trying to change it
When your mind's made up
When your mind's made up
There's no point trying to stop it

You see, you're just like everyone
When the shit falls all you want to do is run away
And hide all by yourself
When you're far from me, there's nothing else

When your mind's made up
When your mind's made up
There's no point trying to change it
When your mind's made up
When your mind's made up
There's no point even talking
When your mind's made up
When your mind's made up
There's no point trying to fight it

So, if you ever want something
And you call, call
Then I'll come running''

When Your Mind's Made Up

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