'Once' director John Carney's new flick is a sweet ode to Irish adolescence

In the upcoming movie musical Sing Street, actor Jack Reynor (who starred in Transformers: Age of Extinction and is one of the names on the reported shortlist to play young Han Solo) plays Brendan, a troubled teen whose taste in ‘80s records inspires his younger brother (newcomer Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) to start a band with his oddball group of schoolmates.

Electronica and punk-driven riffs on pop — by way of Duran Duran and Boy George — set the pace for a sweet indie tale about an adolescent’s quest to figure out his identity beyond the confines of his turbulent family life. Set to a soundtrack that includes foot-tapping original tunes by director John Carney, Sing Street recalls coming of age classics like Stand by Me and Say Anything, but with an Irish sensibility that makes the most of the film’s Dublin locations and homegrown cast. (Aiden Gillen and Maria Doyle Kennedy star as Reynor and Peelo’s dysfunctional parents.)

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As with Carney’s previous projects — 2014’s Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo-starrer Begin Again and 2007’s Once — the Irish director is at his best with scenes that explore intimate moments between two subjects. Case in point? The exclusive Sing Street clip above, which features a moment where Brendan — a stoner rock fan with stringy hair — comes clean about his resentment towards his younger brother in an interaction that reveals both a deeper brotherly connection and a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor.

Sing Street opens in New York and Los Angeles on April 15, ahead of a national wide release.

Sing Street
  • Movie
  • 106 minutes