Vitus 

Vitus may be the best of the occasionally explored film genre about child prodigies, of which Little Man Tate, Searching for Bobby Fischer, (half of) Shine, and (one-tenth of) Magnolia are notables. In Vitus, the titular youngster is shown at ages 6 (Fabrizio Borsani) and 12 (Teo Gheorghiu, himself gifted) as his genius piano ability is discovered and cultivated by his parents, Helen (Julika Jenkins) and Leo (Urs Jucker). Vitus' grandfather (Bruno Ganz), a charmer, figures prominently in the talented youth's life as well.

Vitus is a curious and clever boy and is very easy to root for. When he rebels, it's not the snotty flare-ups of a kid trying to deal with his exceptionality relative to his peers. Rather, it's against his parents, who push him in directions he's reluctant to go. Vitus just wants to be normal; his parents, of course, want what's best for him, which in their opinion is for him to not be normal.

The film scores big points by doing right by Helen and Leo. Like many parents, they load expectations onto their kids by assuming them to be special at something. When their child turns out to actually be gifted, Helen and Leo aren't surprised. They make mistakes in raising Vitus, but they're no villains. Vitus also understands the audience's own strong desire and need, as they become foster parents of a sort, to see the child prodigy be a success and gain renown.

With its keen ear and eye for the psychology of parenting — and without scrimping on entertainment value and charm — Vitus is a joy to watch.

Opens Friday, September 14th, at Ridgeway Four.

Speaking of Vitus, film Review

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
    • Moana

      Disney goes Polynesian!
    • Little Men

      Ira Sachs’ ode to friendship is a quiet triumph

Blogs

News Blog

Trader Joe's Project Back on Track

From My Seat

Boca, Bartow, and Backflips

Film/TV/Etc. Blog

Music Video Monday: Richard James

Tiger Blue

Ole Miss 85, Tigers 77

Fly On The Wall Blog

Tony Allen's Big D Beats Stiff Competition

Intermission Impossible

Naughty & Nice: What's on Stage this Christmas?

News Blog

Etsy Declares Memphis an "Official Maker City"

ADVERTISEMENT

More by Greg Akers

Readers also liked…

ADVERTISEMENT
© 1996-2016

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation