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Indie Thriller GRAND PIANO Lands Elijah Wood
Frodo Baggins takes a flying leap into high-concept hell.
You have to hand it to Elijah Wood. Of all the people who have made that ever-dicey transition from child star into viable adult lead actor, Wood seems to have traversed the chasm with the greatest of ease.
At the age of thirty-one, Wood has a staggering seventy-five acting credits on his IMDb resume. That’s some rapsheet, especially for a guy who still looks like he’s thirteen years old. To my largely untrained eye, he seems to have achieved this by remaining in front of the camera at an almost constant rate, while at the same time mastering the careful dance between off-the-path indie flicks and orbit-shaking blockbusters.
The latest entry will be the indie thriller Grand Piano, brought to you by the sickies who brought you the Ryan Reynolds vehicle Buried (a film which, in regards to Reynolds, would’ve worked much better as a documentary). It is the story of a vanished piano virtuoso who returns to the stage after a five-year layoff. When he is about to start playing, he finds a menacing note written on his sheet music, and it will be up to him to play his ass off to save his own life as well as his wife’s. The Hollywood Reporter is doing its best to help producers Adrian Guerra and Rodrigo Cortes position Grand Piano as “Speed at a piano,” which, for anybody who isn’t a blathering studio twit, is a little like saying “Snakes On A Plane at a chess club.”
So, is this a misstep for Frodo? Sheer odds will tell you that almost any step that any given actor takes in the course of a career is likely to be a step in the wrong direction. The nice thing about an indie flick is that, even if Grand Piano does shit the bed, Wood can get the sheets and blankets into the slop sink before anybody really takes notice.
But a warning to Wood: No soiled sheet escapes the watchful eyes at the Complex. In a year, when Grand Piano tumbles out of the Redbox, you can bet we’ll have copious notes on the finished product. Provided, of course, we don’t forget all about it in the meantime.