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Downtown Express (2012)

tomatometer

50

Average Rating: 5.2/10
Critic Reviews: 6
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 3

No consensus yet.

audience

50

liked it
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 68

My Rating

Movie Info

Set in the world of Russian immigrants living in New York City, Downtown Express uses music to explore the clash of old world values against the lure and excitement of a new country. Under the watch of his loving but overbearing father, virtuoso violinist and Juilliard student Sasha (Grammy nominee Philippe Quint) prepares for a critical recital meant to launch his career. Yet, he is increasingly drawn to the rhythms of the streets of New York, and when he meets singer-songwriter Ramona

Unrated,

Drama, Romance, Musical & Performing Arts

David Grubin

$3.5k

International Film Circuit - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (11) | Top Critics (6) | Fresh (6) | Rotten (5)

The unconvincing but gently spirited "Jazz Singer" update features accomplished musicians in the lead roles; the treat is their playing, not their acting.

August 23, 2012 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Everyone seems so genuinely excited to be sharing their music on film that the entire experience becomes a joyful alliance between audience and actors.

April 20, 2012 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
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The film may be hopelessly old-fashioned, but it's hard to entirely resist its portrait of a city that not only never sleeps but also seems to be bursting with melody at every turn.

April 19, 2012 Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mr. Grubin may fumble two romances and several pivotal scenes, but the energy of the streets remains safe in his hands.

April 19, 2012 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
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The film's wide-eyed view of New York as a wonderland of harmonic diversity soon grows as tiresome as the film's trite romantic shuffling.

April 17, 2012 Full Review Source: Time Out New York
Time Out New York
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Whether to let go and follow your own path is a stock dilemma, and an implausibly hopeful conclusion winds up undercutting the realism of this immigrant song.

April 17, 2012 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Marked by wide-eyed charm, though not particularly adroit -- a marginal pan, owing to its somewhat lazy and functional narrative. Still, its music, from Philippe Quint and Nellie McKay, absolutely sings.

September 26, 2012 Full Review Source: Shockya.com
Shockya.com

"Tchaikovsky must be grabbed by the throat or it becomes sentimental," declares the paterfamilias in Downtown Express, but the character could be critiquing the very movie in which finds himself.

April 26, 2012 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

'Downtown Express' is a charming, if somewhat familiar, movie that becomes extraordinary because it has astonishingly good music.

April 19, 2012 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

The movie's final act tries, somewhat admirably, to consolidate the plot's myriad interpersonal conflicts.

April 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

The film stars two virtuoso musical performers, one in rock and one in classical music. The plot is minor, but the music is a major--perhaps the major--attraction.

April 11, 2012 Full Review Source: Mark Leeper's Reviews
Mark Leeper's Reviews

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