Brick 2005 ★★★½

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.

3 Comments

  • Love this film! One of my favorites. I would have never imagined film noir dialogue in a modern setting, in a high school nonetheless, would work so well. Can't wait to see Rian Johnson's next film Looper.

  • Looper looks good. Plus, I'm a sucker for high-concept sci-fi, so i have big hopes for it.

  • Even though I usually applaud originality in a screenplay, I feel Johnson merely used this specific setting for the sake of being different. Also, the use of slang was slightly overdone, rendering it more distracting than entertaining.

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