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Movie Reviews

The Greatest Hits ★★★



Released: 12th April 2024

Director: Ned Benson

Starring: Lucy Boynton, Justin H Min, David Corenswet

Music and film have a long history, with plenty of memorable films with music integral to their plot. Suppose you marry time travel and something like High Fidelity. In that case, the result is The Greatest Hits, the latest film from Ned Benson who worked on Marvel’s Black Widow and directed the ambitious The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby. We follow Harriet (Lucy Boynton), a grieving young woman who at one point could have been a big shot in the music industry. Stuck in the past both literally and figuratively. Harriet is struggling to process the death of her boyfriend Max, as she is granted the ability to travel in time to songs she has memories of.

It’s a unique premise that offers a fresh spin on films about grief and music. To add to Harriet’s situation she develops a rapport with someone from her grief counselling sessions, leaving her torn whether to stay in the present or cling on to her memories and interactions with her past.

Of course, for a film like this to be successful much rests on the soundtrack, which doesn’t disappoint with an eclectic mix from Jamie XX to Roxy Music, Beach House and Phoebe Bridgers. It shows how music can connect us to specific moments in our lives, sure to resonate with audiences.  Set in the Silver Lake part of LA, Harriet spends her time at gigs and record stores, with many music lovers sure to find references to places and tracks. There was clearly a great deal of care put in to make this feel as authentic as possible.

The cast do a lot of heavy lifting with Lucy Boynton showing her credentials in a leading role following supporting roles in Bohemian Rhapsody and Netflix’s The Politician, she is ably supported by Justin H Min (Shortcomings, After Yang) and our new Superman David Corenswet who is given a smaller role but is integral to the story.

The Greatest Hits may be a tad on the nose and too predictable to be groundbreaking. Yet there’s much to admire here, with an earnest message and reflections on grief and loss, whilst its premise and performances help it stand apart from other films that have tackled these themes.

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