A Late Quartet

  • 15
  • Yaron Zilberman (2012)
  • US
  • 105 min
Film Review
Reviewed By
3 out of 5

Documentarist Yaron Zilberman makes a steady move to fiction with this subtly observed drama about a string quartet experiencing discord after 25 years of harmony. Christopher Walken plays Peter, a famed cellist who sparks the unrest with his decision to retire after being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. This prompts second violinist Robert (Philip Seymour Hoffman) to jostle for position with first violinist Daniel (Mark Ivanir) while Daniel has his eye on Robert's daughter, Alexandra (Imogen Poots). Catherine Keener is viola player Juliette, the girl's mother and Robert's wife, who is criticised by both for neglecting their needs. Essentially, this is a highbrow soap opera, but it's impeccably acted and filled with glorious music by Beethoven, Haydn and Bach. Zilberman's shrewd contrasts between the foursome's personal and professional problems, and insights into the commitment and collaboration required for great art also ensure that it's constantly engaging.

Plot Summary

The oldest member of a string quartet announces he is retiring due to ill health. His decision leads to hidden resentments among the others erupting, threatening to destroy years of friendship and artistry. Meanwhile, the teenage daughter of two of the musicians harbours secret desires for one of their colleagues. Drama, starring Christopher Walken, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Catherine Keener.

Cast and crew


Robert Gelbart
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Daniel Lerner
Mark Ivanir
Juliette Gelbart
Catherine Keener
Peter Mitchell
Christopher Walken
Alexandra Gelbart
Imogen Poots
Liraz Charhi
Dr Nadir
Madhur Jaffrey
Anne Sofie von Otter
Gideon Rosen
Wallace Shawn
Nina Lee
Nina Lee
Megan McQuillan


Yaron Zilberman

Other Information

Theatrical distributor: 
Artificial Eye
Swearing, a sex scene, nudity.
Available on DVD and BluRay
Released 5 Apr 2013
Certificate 15