Movie Review - The Brave One
by William K. Elliott
If you spend a few extra minutes searching through the DVDs and BluRays on the shelves of your local video rental establishment, or if you do the same with your online rental provider’s catalog, you might find something a bit unusual. Mixed in among all the shoot-em-up and drama-for-drama’s-sake movies, if you peruse carefully, there is a class of movie frequently missing from your local theater’s marque. These are flicks with a twist, as different as a man dressed in a bright purple suit with a yellow tie and a pink Panama hat. At a funeral.
I am talking about a movie with a plot.
No, it’s true. Not only are there movies that have these seemingly archaic devices, some of them have even been filmed in the years after Ike stopped playing golf.
Which leads me to the film my wife and I sat down to watch over the weekend. At first we found it to be a little odd. This wasn’t because the aforementioned man in slightly-too-bright clothing was one of the main characters. Instead, it was because the characters were… well… characters. By the time you were fifteen minutes into the movie, you felt a real connection to them—you felt like you really knew them. You even, dare I say it, liked them.
This wasn’t any blockbuster of course. Such movies rarely are. But “The Brave One” starring Jodie Foster and Terrence Howard (www.imdb.com/title/tt0476964/) is most definitely a movie worth seeing. The plot is summarized on the cover as “A woman struggles to recover from a brutal attack by setting out on a mission for revenge.” But don’t let that fool you; revenge is only a small part of the movie. Instead, you watch Erica Bain (played by Foster) as she sets out to deal with the fact that everything she assumed about her safe little life is an illusion. Yes, she buys a gun, and yes, she does become a vigilante—but through Foster’s fantastic portrayal of Erica, you come to empathize with her real motive: to be safe again.
I won’t spoil it by telling you how it all ends, but I will say that Terrence Howard (playing Detective Mercer, the cop that eventually solves the vigilante cases), does a superb job of depicting his character’s mixed emotions. As with Foster’s Erica, Howard’s Det. Mercer is a believable and complex character.
“The Brave One” is rated “R” for a fair bit of graphic violence, and a little nudity. There is also some foul language. But none of it seems over the top to me, and is instead indicative of what feels like a real-life story. Check it out; I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
William K Elliott
William K Elliott is an author currently working on his first novel, “In The Company of Devils,” about a man who thinks he understands the world. Until he witnesses a gang hit… Check out William’s blog, as well as the development of his book at www.WilliamKElliott.com
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-- jd --