The Moya View

Flora and Son: A Frowzy Song Filled Fable for Today’s Anxious Soul

Treasure Entertainment

Movie Info via Wikipedia:

Flora, a single mother living in Dublin, is having trouble with her estranged son Max, a rebellious teenage petty thief. Encouraged by the Gardaí to find Max a hobby, Flora rescues an old guitar from a dumpster and, with the help of a Los Angeles-based online guitar teacher, discovers that one person’s rubbish can be another person’s salvation.


It’s a pleasant surprise to see Bono’s daughter, Eve Hewson in the song filled semi-romance Flora and Son, streaming on Apple Plus. Hewson has a pleasant singing voice, a soulful and unaffected beauty, and a charming but natural acting style. She plays the irrepressible title character, a single mom living in Dublin with her moody (grappling with ma’s and da’s recent divorce) fourteen year old son, Max (Orén Kinlan).

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Since this is a John Carney musical truffle (Once and Sing Street) there is going to be a lot of high spirited gentle sublimation and wish fulfillment floating in the air seeking gentle connection. It’s not so much souls finding their partners that matters with Carney. It’s more about the music finding its perfect human vessel- the right song, voice matching at the right time to be perfectly sung- the story of a soul finding its perfect music.

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There will be a lot of hit and miss moments, shuffling through and rejecting musical styles. There’s nothing truly mean in this process, just a lot of tuning and retuning, practice and revision until the perfect personal music chord is strummed, played and sung. The process and discovery in a Carney film is always playful, gentle and warm. Flora and Son, is no exception, even though it exists as a minor song in a minor chord of the Carney cinematic songbook. The movie earns its sentimental, uplifting experience one soaring song and musical number at a time.

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The songs written by Carney and his long time collaborator, Gary Clark run the gamut from folk to rap to techno. They exist as bridges to connection and reconnection- whether it be Flora sympathizing and collaborating with her troublesome son; her estranged musician husband who once opened for Snow Patrol; or the long distance music tutor, a yank named Jeff (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), who zooms into and out of the computer in fourth wall breaking rooftop musical numbers whenever the emotional moment requires a finely done duet. The song is being created note by note, chord by chord- the band forming instrument by instrument, rehearsal by rehearsal. The song (High Life) soars because Carney has invested so much in showing the audience its construction.

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Flora and Son gets a 3,5 out of 5 or a B+.


Directed byJohn Carney

Written by

John Carney

Produced by

  • Anthony Bregman
  • John Carney
  • Peter Cron
  • Rebecca O’Flanagan
  • Robert Walpole



John Conroy

Edited by

Stephen O’Connell

Music by


Distributed by

Apple TV+

Release dates

  • January 22, 2023(Sundance)
  • September 22, 2023(United States)
  • February 23, 2024(Ireland)

Running time97 minutes[1]Countries

  • Ireland
  • United States[2]


Treasure Entertainment





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