Movies that are slightly off.
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.
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 modern day film noir, but at high school with teenagers. And surprisingly, it works.
Do you remember what high school was like? That was the whole universe. There was nothing beyond it. Nothing. The way the film utilizes these desolate sports fields and empty car parks, as if to suggest there is no life and no world beyond the California hills that frame nearly every setting...clever stuff. There is also the complete lack of the adult beyond the most simple archetype: the mother and the principle, and the fact that, while most of the characters are students seen in or around the school, we never see anyone doing anything even remotely close to school work. To the characters, this is the real world, as the real world is to a detective in the true old film noirs.
A tremendous amount of thought went into this story, and that hard work definitely raises this above a simple gimmick.
Besproken in aflevering 003
(Segment: Stockholm Syndroom)
I don't remember high school being like this at all.
Great movie, very clever. Enjoyed every minute of it, once I figure out what the hell was going on.
Beautiful tribute to classic Noir films.
A unique debut; a mashup of teen drama and noir that shouldn't work but comes together in a strange hybrid. The ridiculous detective dialogue took a while for me to get used to and enjoy but by the end I felt like it didn't amount to much. Worth a watch just to see Gordon-Levitt playing the coolest cucumber out.
Decided to give this another shot after seeing it in the theater a decade ago. I feel like I'm the only the person who doesn't like this movie so there was a good chance I'd missed something before and would come out appreciating it this time around. Not the case. Nothing about this works for me (except for one or two of the pieces of music). Not feeling the conceit, the writing, the editing, the affectation-laden performances and I think it looks like garbage.
I don't care for any of Rian Johnson's other films either so I am probably just gonna mark his future work as "not for me" and leave it at that.
[Recommendation: If you enjoyed Double Indemnity (1944)]
I've always had a difficult time buying into the premise of high school students being anything beyond dumb kids. Maybe it's just the school I attended, or maybe even just the various social circles I interacted with at the time. This personality archetype that Brendan embodies, the edgy, too-smart-for-you, counter-cultural loner, is so familiar to me and why I have such a hard time seeing anything other than socially awkward teen.
Before tenth grade when I finally took out my facial piercings and gave my Bomber jacket to charity, I was and frequently associated with these characters, and they were all fundamentally the same. Not wanting to appeal to the status quo, they…
Maltese Falcon rip off
its a fun time
Hold on, keep watching - there is a moment where you start picking up what Johnson is putting down. And it's intoxicating.
me gustó menos que la primera vez que la vi, pero aún así: qué divertido es ver esto de la superposición hammett/preparatoria en una película. como aquel capítulo de seinfeld del libro y la biblioteca pero durante dos horas.
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