In the deep south of 1907, women received few promotions. Totally disgusted when she's again passed over (by a man), Dr. Lillie Penleric (Janet McTeer) resigns as Professor of Music History to reside with her sister Helen in Appalachia. Since nothing there is what it seems, she quickly learns that Helen is a lesbian.
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As she meets the locals, she discovers that most seem to regularly sing ancient Irish and Scottish ballads with a clarity and local idiosyncrasies that inspire Lillie to categorize them for a book she'll write. Since the nearby coal company wants to purchase this land, many perceive Lillie as just another capitalist, seeking to sell the mountain heritage. In particular, worldly Tom Bledsoe (Adain Quinn) who's “been to Chicago” and therefore understands “outlander” values. Tom is ornery enough to trick Lillie into removing her clothes, even though he eventually becomes her love interest and business partner.
An interesting character is Tom's grandmother, Viney who readily pours out scores of songs into the victrola/wax recorder which Lillie must lug up the mountains.
This film is no “Deliverance.” These people are simple and clean, perhaps because “hygiene” is taught in the school. They don't seem to work very hard but rather play fiddle, sing in church and drink from jugs. If for nothing else, see “Songcatcher” for its unusual soundtrack and for the unimaginably beautiful mountain backdrops of western North Carolina.
The review of this Movie prepared by Angry Jim Magin
A music teacher goes into the mountains to visit her sister who has set up a school there to teach the "backwards" mountain children. The teacher discovers the mountain people have beautiful, orignal versions of old songs that have been passed down through generations. She works on these while falling in love, learning her sister is a lesbian and making unlikely friends.
The review of this Movie prepared by Katrina