Tae-il (Hong Isaac) reconnects with Ji-won (Jang Haeun), former bandmate and now teacher at a music school. Her devotion is to her teenage pupils, four of whom have started a metal band, hoping to win a local competition. Tae-il lends a hand while struggling to make it on his own as a musician.

Similar films – School of Rock and Sing Street, both worthy peers – celebrate the moment it all comes together, the chorus kicks in, the crowd goes wild. Their driving factor is “will they pull off the show, will they get the girl?”. Da Capo finds its love in the process, trading the euphoria of loud rock concerts for the magic that happens between artistic collaborators. Its vulnerability is not in standing before a crowd fighting to win its approval, but in saying “hey, I have an idea for a song” with a close friend.

The kids are dorky in the way that kids in metal bands are: big hair, angsty lyrics, overly serious. Whether it’s arguing about their genre or their lyrical content, an outsider can recognise the joy in what they’re doing. They have created something they all care deeply about, and that might just be more meaningful than the music they make.

But it’s the intimacy between Tae-il and Ji-won – two real-life musicians – that really makes Da Capo shine. As they work through chord progressions in front of a piano in a quiet room at night, something transcendent is happening. The film captures another kind of love, that isn’t quite platonic and isn’t quite romantic, but finds safety, respect, encouragement in the space between two people.

Da Capo makes that significant, almost spiritual, experience of creating music together tangible, somewhere between the notes and amongst the squabbles. It might be the quietest rock movie ever, but it holds its own with all the best.



CAST: Hong Isaac, Jang Ha-eun, Seo Young-jae, Jang Da-hyeon, Yang Tae-hwan, Cha Min-ho

DIRECTOR: Shim Chan-yang

WRITER: Shim Chan-yang

SYNOPSIS: Two former bandmates reconnect while helping a band of teenagers prepare for a local music content.