New video: First trailers are in for the Paganini biopic

New video: First trailers are in for the Paganini biopic


norman lebrecht

November 04, 2013

The US-German violinist David Garrett plays Paganini in Hollywood’s first composer biopic for a couple of decades. Here are two trailers:




  • Take the percussion and stuff it. I thought this was a bio-pic. This is far too 21st C. to be that.

    • tyelko says:

      May I suggest you look at the actual trailer rather than some stills a fan project cobbled together when making statements about the actual movie?

      • Michael Schaffer says:

        I don’t think one should judge a movie by its trailer either. But if we go by the trailer – it looks like a terrible movie, too.

    • A Self-Appointed Guardian against Self-Appointed Guardians of Culture says:

      Oh, puh-leeez!!! It’s f***in’ Paganini! It’s not Great Music!

  • sdReader says:

    If it’s a huge success — unlikely — “new audiences” may be built.

  • Sounds and looks very entertaining! I can hardly wait to see the film!

  • Jimbo says:

    Looks more like the Andre Rieu Story.

  • Alan Penner says:

    Wagner, Amadeus, Immortal Beloved… Hollywood always gets it wrong.

  • Michael Schaffer says:

    I thought the Wagner film/series with Richard Burton wasn’t too bad.

    Gidon Kremer played Paganini in the film “Frühlingssinfonie” although he only makes a fairly brief appearance – the movie is about Robert and Clara Schumann. Rather good movie, BTW.

  • m2n2k says:

    What is so “wrong” about Amadeus? It is a wonderful movie. As for this one, let’s wait until we see it. At least, compared to some others, it has an advantage of an actual violinist playing the part.

    • sdReader says:

      And four years before it was a wonderful movie, it was a brilliant play, starring Paul Scofield, who should have been in the movie.

  • Michael Schaffer says:

    Almost everything is “wrong” about Amadeus from a historical point of view. But I think it was still a pretty entertaining movie. It didn’t pretend either to be an “accurate” biopic. And it probably got some aspects of Mozart’s character more “right” than the previous solemn, idealized Mozart picture of the 19th century. He seems to have been a pretty hilarious guy in real life who liked fun and games and playing pranks on people. He did come across to some of his contemporaries as somewhat unleashed, so I think the overall portrayal of him probably wasn’t too far off from what he may have been like.

  • Michael Schaffer says:

    David Bongartz, excuse me, David Garrett is such a lame figure. Most of what he does is grimacing and jumping around, his actual playing is so mediocre and boring. Check out the video of him playing the Brahms concerto. He can play that OK, he gets most of the notes, but his playing is really stiff and strained and has nothing of the extrovert energy he fakes when he is playing much easier stuff.

    If you want to see a real rock star violinist in action who pushes the boundaries (sometimes maybe even a little too hard, but everyone decide that for themselves), check out Patricia Kopatchinskaja. There is a lot of real untamed musical energy there, it’s not just all show as with this insipid girly magazine cover dude.

  • alexanderstrauch says:

    not the best german movie – but a then upcoming actor and germanbased pop-singer like groenmeyer playing schumann in an finally yet impressing movie. it shows that a star acting a star could succeed. besides schumann admired paganini?!?

  • peacenikkie says:

    As a Schumann/Groenmeyer fan, I must see this film in its entirety!

    • Michael Schaffer says:

      It’s been many years, but I really liked it when I last watched it – and I am generally biased against German movies. But Grönemeyer did really well in portraying the nervous, emotionally torn young Schumann (or at least that’s how I remember it), and Rolf Hoppe was really convincing as Clara’s father, too.

      • peacenikkie says:

        Thank you, Michael. I will do a search for the film. I enjoy older films for the most part. Now you’ve made me curious!

        • Michael Schaffer says:

          If you are interested in that kind of movie, there is also a TV mini series about Schubert with the title “Mit meinen heissen Tränen”, a German-Austrian co-production from the same period. It was also released in a much shorter version as a single movie with the title “Notturno”. It’s rather melancholic, elegiac, and at times very sad – just like Schubert’s life was.

  • ande says:

    I’ll make up my mind when I see the film. It looks good from some of the other clips I’ve seen. So easy to bag things. So hard to make art.

  • der Musikant says:

    Surely there’s no beating Kinski in this field?

  • m2n2k says:

    Unlike a documentary, any work of fiction, by definition, contains a number of untruths. Therefore accusing Amadeus of getting things “wrong” just because of some historical inaccuracies in it is unjust. As a fictional movie that was based on a play it got plenty of things very right. If this new “biopic” is half as good as was Amadeus, it will be well worth seeing.