Set in the trendy Brooklyn neighborhood of Red Hook, “Hearts Beat Loud” brings us the heart-warming story of a widowed husband raising his teenage daughter about to head off to college in southern California. The father, Frank, once a band member in his younger days who now owns a record store, still possesses the ear to spot musical talent.
NBC “Parks and Recreation” sitcom star Nick Offerman headlines this film and discovers that his UCLA-bound daughter Sam,played by Disney Channel actress and singer Kiersey Clemons, has serious vocal chops and music writing skills. Together, an overnight “jam-sesh” between the two transforms their musical number into a stirring viral hit song.
“Hearts Beat Loud” is an enjoyable journey about dreams and moving on. The father Frank wants to continue exploring a shared interest in music with his teenager while he still can. Perfect student and daughter Sam is set on pursuing her goal of college and medical school only to pause and rethink everything once her song writing and singing takes off.
Joining the exceptionally cast Offerman and Clemons is Ted Danson, whom everybody knows his name—Sam Malone—from the NBC hit show “Cheers” in the 1980s and early 90s. Golden Globe winner and Oscar-nominated Toni Collette rounds out this remarkable ensemble that delivers a gritty script and believable ending.
Director Brett Haley (“The Hero”) gives a steady dose of realism raising teens. “Hearts Beat Loud” nicely illustrates how a parent’s dream for their child may or may not align with the teen’s life goals. Underlining daughter Sam’s musical gift is her arrival at the crossroads of deciding whether to forgo college and moving out or stay at home with her father.
“Hearts Beat Loud” is a feel-good, funny, movie experience with serious undertones on life’s changing relationships as we age. Teenagers embarking on college affects the parent(s) left behind. The same goes for their dreams, and how those pursuits may or may not be what the parent envisioned. Either way, the parent-teen rapport in this movie is what brings out the film’s honesty and enjoyment.
This movie will be released in select U.S. cities on June 15. It will be shown in the Phoenix area at the Harkins Camelview theater (Fashion Square in Scottsdale) and come to Tucson by the week of June 29.
“Hearts Beat Loud” is rated PG-13 with a running time of 1 hour and 37 minutes.