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Brooklyn: A charming film that features some of the best performances of 2015

December 9, 2015

Brooklyn movie poster

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Brooklyn is one of my favorite films of 2015 because of its adherence to adding depth to a small story. Brooklyn is layered with three-dimensional characters, fantastic writing and tons of warmth. I respected its usage of nice characters who simply get by and do the best they can. I guarantee Brooklyn will make you feel all the feels and I hope that Saoirse Ronan wins an Oscar for her mature and confident work.

Brookyln Saoirse Ronan

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Brooklyn tells the story of am Irish immigrant named Eilis making her way in 1950’s New York City. There was no work for her in Ireland so her sister secured her a visa and she made the big move. The initial homesickness leads to love and a tragedy finds her back in Ireland where she finds new opportunities. I was amazed at how it kept defying expectations and finding ways to make me laugh and surprised. I love that the characters feel real and they are allowed to show not tell us their emotions. For instance, there is a massive transformation in Eilis but it is so subtle and nuanced many will miss it. Eilis grows as a character and eventually learns what she wants and begins to make her own decisions. She will never say “I’m grown up now,” you just see it. It doesn’t hurt Ronan has great chemistry with whoever she acts with.

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Screenwriter Nick Hornby (About a Boy, Fever Pitch) is one of my favorite writers and I love how he adapted Colm Toibin’s 2009 book. The core romance is a true odd coupling  but both actors are so good you can’t help but wish the best for them. When she finds herself back in Ireland you are conflicted and hoping she finally makes up her mind and does what is best for her. Director John Crowley does something that I absolutely love. Much like in this years Me and Earl and the Dying Girl the actors are allowed to act and the camera lingers on their faces and they thrive in their roles.

There are little moments that are beautifully subtle. I love the dinner scenes at Eilis’s boarding house because they highlight characters that are normally underwritten and cliche. The women are all supportive and aside from a curly haired weirdo they all have a great chemistry. Normally, you’d have a bunch of archetypes going through the motions but here every conversation and interaction is fun and surprising.

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Julie Walters steals the show as the owner of the boarding house that Eilse stays in. Everything that comes out of Mrs. Kehoe’s mouth is pure gold and I love how she is tough but kind. She is like the majority of the characters in Brooklyn. The characters are alive and the movie appeals to everyone.

What I love most about Brooklyn is that is doesn’t pander or attempt to go huge. It understands that if the performances are good and the script is right people will be into it. There are some melodramatic moments but they feel earned and the final shot will put a massive smile on your face.

Watch Brooklyn. You will love it.

 

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. John Leavengood permalink
    December 9, 2015 9:31 am

    I must be trapped in my own bubble because I love Saoirse Ronan and I never even heard of this.

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