The production of the music film Once, does not sound like a formula for success. A 17-day shoot, novice actors, little dialog, wall-to-wall music, unnamed lead characters and a budget so low that much of the music, recorded live, required small microphones to be hidden in the actors clothing. Au contraire! This tender Irish love story from musician turned Indie filmmaker John Carney will steal your heart before you even know it is gone …. The heart lured away by the excellent music, natural chemistry and performances of novice actors, The Frames frontman Glen Hansard and 19-year old Czech singer / pianist Marketa Irglova.
Hansard as a part-time vacuum cleaner repairer, part-time Dublin street musician crosses paths with Czech immigrant Irglova, a street flower seller. Attracted initially to his music, Irglova initiates a friendship that over the course of a few days evolves into love and a musical collaboration that astounds. An undesired ending for the passionate characters, although disappointing is essential and in keeping with the truth of this film – the music. Both leads, consummate musicians hold their own with the task of acting. Mesmerizing, organic and natural – believable in every scene, the ending made more bearable by the news that during the filming process Hansard and Irglova fell in love and became a real life couple.
Of the soundtrack album, Hansard wrote most of the music. With the exception of one track ("Gold") recorded by Fergus O'Farrell either Hansard or Irglova or both recorded the remaining 12 tracks of the disc. Fans of acoustic music will appreciate the arrangements. The standout track is Irglova's "The Hill". Hansard and Irglova have been nominated for two Grammy Awards: Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media and the Best Song Written for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media for "Falling Slowly."
Track Listing: 1. Falling Slowly 2. If You Want Me 3. Broken Hearted Hoover Fixer Sucker Guy 4. When Your Minds Made Up 5. Lies 6. Gold 7. The Hill 8. Fallen from the Sky 9. Leave 10. Trying to Pull Myself Away 11. All the Way Down 12. Once 13. Say It to Me Now
Both Hansard and Irglova have stated in interviews that they will most likely not be pursuing acting careers. It would be nice to see and hear these two together on the big screen again, knowing that it is illegally only adds to the appeal of Once .