Evan (Freddie Highmore, better known as Johnny Depp's little buddy in both Finding Neverland and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) is an orphan with poor social skills who often lets his mind drift, obsessively occupied with sound. When he escapes the orphanage in search of his parents, whom Evan believes he will find somehow through the power of music, he meets Wizard (Robin Williams), an eccentric man who wears lots of jewelry and takes in homeless children and teaches them to play instruments and become buskers. That we're not supposed to believe that Evan, whose mother (Keri Russell) was seriously injured during pregnancy, has autism or some other birth defect, nor that Wizard is a pederast, are only the first of the many far-fetched premises that August Rush asks us to accept. And it's difficult to know what to make of the multiple instances of Evan learning a musical skill from a black child and then quickly mastering it and far surpassing that child's abilities, leaving them to stand around awestruck by Evan along with everyone else. But it does feel certain that this all-ages fairy tale is too slow and wishy-washy for kids to enjoy and too full of disconcerting subtext for adults to tolerate.