Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
A detective story.
A teenage loner pushes his way into the underworld of a high school crime ring to investigate the disappearance of his ex-girlfriend.
Noir- November Challenge! Movie #44
I have to compliment the director for his mad skills created a dark violent world within the realm of high school! No this isn't your mothers high school, hell its not even mine!
I never would have believed a neo noir involving high school kids could work! But this film proved me wrong! Joseph Gordon-Levitt was absolutely incredible in this and I truly believe the film never could have pulled it off without his gripping performance and high believability factor!
Recommended by Brendan via my list "Movie Request Hotline"
Thanks for recommending this film! I adore Joseph Gordon-Levitt!
It's really quite amazing what Rian Johnson can do with an incredibly limited budget. Brick is nothing if not creative—it may utilize genre conventions, but it does so in a unique way. As a lover of inventive cinematography the biggest standout for me was the framing: everything is shot from an extremely low angle, and many characters are defined as much by their shoes as anything else (and speaking of signature imagery, there's a pervasive fear of garbage bags running through the film that definitely gave me chills once or twice). The editing is also phenomenal, constantly pushing the envelope and using every trick in the book to keep you on your toes. The dialogue's snappy imitation-noir…
If there are two types of movies that have been done to death, it's noir pastiche and high school movies. But, in one of the great bits of movie alchemy, Rian Johnson takes these two subgenres and smashes them up with the reckless abandon of someone who doesn't seem to care if anyone likes it or not, even though we all know that's impossible.
Johnson and the cast are all smart enough to know that a conceit like this will work best if it's played completely straight, and with the exception of one (arguably 2) scene(s), it is. And amusement at the idea of high school students living out a Dashiell Hammett nightmare eventually gives way to genuine and shattering…
It's not often we get to see a debut film that is made with such verve, one that truly stands out daring to be so unique. As a whole it is very much a film that delivers style over any meaningful content but what style it turns out to be. This fast talking, sharply edited modern noir appears to constantly challenge itself scene after scene, seeing if it can continue to raise expectations.
The details of the plot are almost impenetrable, the basic premise being that a spectacle wearing loner called Brendan (a rather downsized and far more agreeable Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is attempting to trace an ex-girlfriend who has asked for his help. Beyond that it's a case of suburban…
So now we've shaken the tree. Let's wait and see what falls on our heads.
Brick is a film that shouldn't work.
It actually took me a few tries to get fully submerged into Rian Johnson's bleak neo noir high school drama thriller. Yes, all those words belong in the same sentence.
I've tried several times to watch Brick but every one of those times I've been distracted, disengaged, or the film just failed to pull me in. I finally powered through the film last night and I feel incredibly silly for not being able to finish it. Brick is one of those films whose clawed grip only sinks deeper into your flesh and fills your veins with colder and…
"Whatever befalls you I'll deal with. Just tell me about the trouble with the brick, the pin."
Brick is writer and director, Rian Johnson's, feature debut which he delivered with great craftsmanship and an original and unique vision. Despite having seen Looper first, I think Brick is still Johnson's best film and most impressive one. It has a very original and smart concept which I haven't seen played out so well an any other film. Brick has all the classic noir conventions of films from the 30's like The Maltese Falcon, but it is set in a very different and drastic manner. So in a way Brick has a similar mood and atmosphere of classic film noir, but by setting…
A sophisticated blend of sub-genres festooned with razor-sharp dialogue.
Reminder: excellent movies can be made on the cheap. Script, skill, and competence can't be bought.
Brick is a wonderfully retro feeling mystery noir style film. It is an excellent debut for Rian Johnson and Joseph Gordon-Levitt is an excellent lead. It's really smart and works well with it's small budget, almost feeling like a lost film from a decade ago.
Superb directional debut from Rian Johnson, its a strange bend of film noir and high school movie with a cast of odd-ball characters and a script full of wit and fast paced dialogue. Even though this is nothing new the movie feels fresh because its two genre's that haven't really been meshed before.
Joseph Gordon Levitt excels as the bullish high school student who gets dragged into a murky world of dope running and double crossing when he finds his ex-girlfriend dead and is well supported by a cast of up and coming young actors.
This is a teen twist on the detective movie which pays homage to the likes of Chinatown and The Maltese Falcon. The film survives multiple viewings and is well worth tracking down if you haven't already.
Really shouldn't work but it somehow just does. Who would have thought that a Noir film with high school children be so fascinating and engrossing.
JGL did seem to want to fight everyone and everything though, seriously I wouldn't have been surprised if he'd just started punching his car towards the end of the film.
Plays its potentially gimmicky premise perfectly, resulting in a delightfully clever genre mashup that's unfailingly fun to watch.
A good noir movie.
One thing about BRICK:
"I don't want you to come kicking in my homeroom door."
I'm still a little confused as to how and when Rian Johnson started being regarded as a cinematic genius. But BRICK is genius. No argument there.
I remember walking out of the theater the first time I saw it and hearing the guy behind me tell his date that BRICK was "like Dashiell Hammett for high school," which is right on the money, except he said it like it was a bad thing -- like BRICK had been written by someone who was clumsy with dialogue, rather than the other way around.
That anyone could doubt the intentionality of BRICK might be a point in its favor. BRICK is smart. But it's also so casually playful ("You read Tolkein?") that it's easy to underestimate.
It's an incredible debut.
An incredible indie movie about love, regret, crime and treason that come over a young highschool student who desperately searches for his disappeared ex-girlfriend. A masterpiece of the noir scene.
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For five years, film critic Scott Tobias compiled "The New Cult Canon" in a regular column for The A.V. Club…
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[after his parents have left, thinking he is ill] "They bought it. Incredible! One of the worst performances of my…