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April 28, 2011

Movie Review: Young@Heart (2007)

I've watched many documentaries over the past few years. Some are informative. Some are just plain interesting. A select few can be called inspirational. The Young@Heart chorus is a group of people in their seventies and eighties who get together to create renditions of various pop songs.They are led by Bob Cilman, a man in his fifties who chooses the music and directs the group's shows.

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The group performs songs by Coldplay, The Ramones, Sinead O'Connor and James Brown. We basically start at the beginnings of a new show. The group has traveled around the world for years, and now it's time to put together a few new songs.

When you see some of the struggles the group has with simple things like learning lyrics and singing on key, you wonder how they ever get a show together. It's great for a few laughs, but it really brings you into the process of this huge undertaking. Piece by piece, they bring it together, and by the end, they have an act that brings people to their feet.

As you might expect with people at this age, illness can be a problem. We hear stories of beating cancer, hearing the last rites and avoiding the white light. Along the way, we lose some of the members of the group, but the rest go on and sing their hearts out at their scheduled show.

I really loved this film. I heard high praise for it, and I had to see what it was all about. The singers are amazing people, and they all love being a part of the group. There are a few music videos inserted in the film that show just how much fun everyone has with their amazing hobby. There are also very touching moments, and I was wiping tears off my face at least three times during the movie. The group's tributary rendition of Coldplay's "Fix You" is spectacular and dramatic. It was just beautiful.

This is a movie that everyone should see. I don't care if you like the songs going in. You'll like what Young@Heart does with them. You may not need to feel inspired, but you'll feel it anyway. I felt good after watching this, and it made me want to get up and do something, even if it was just to clean the kitchen. I'll probably watch it again, and probably more than once. You should do the same.

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