Preview: A Late Quartet (2012)


When a member of a prominent string quartet is diagnosed with Parkinson's, they embark on his final performance tour while the remaining members of the quartet begin falling out.

  • Poster: C


I have been insulting a lot of minimalist designs lately, especially for indie films, so I'm hoping to be less harsh on this one. It's not that the design doesn't frustrate me in many ways, it does. However, the layout and positioning seems to work for the somber nature of the subject (both a string quartet and medical tragedy). Yet, I'm dismayed by the highlighting of only three members of the cast, all Oscar nominees and/or winners. This is a quartet, not a trio. Let's not pretend the fourth person doesn't exist. He may not have Oscar or name recognition, but he deserves equal billing.

  • Trailer: C


Everything I've hated about Philip Seymour Hoffman for years is on full display here. His pompous egoism oozes out of the frame, making him seem more like a selfish, miserable performan than a conflicted human being. The trailer itself is poorly constructed, though the presumed soliloquy spoken by Christopher Walken helps keep it from droning on endlessly and suggests at least some measure of symbolism.

Oscar Prospects:

With stars like these, I'm sure someone will try to push them as Oscar contenders, but the film's barely going to be a blip on the road to Oscar.

Release Date:

  • November 2, 2012