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|Index||428 reviews in total|
Saw this at the Mill Valley Film Festival. It's essentially a film noir set in present-day San Clemente High School, reminiscent of "The Big Sleep," but with drug-dealing added to the mix of double-crossing. The characters may be teenagers, but the dialog channels Chandler and Hammett, and my only real complaint with the film is that Joseph Gordon-Leavitt (in an otherwise wonderful performance) sometimes mumbles; this is dialog you don't want to miss. Lukas Haas is wonderfully eccentric in what is essentially the Sidney Greenstreet role, Noah Fleiss as the dumb thug, and Nora Zehetner even LOOKs like Mary Astor. As with all the great American noir films, there are many sardonic laughs inserted into the dark story.
This is a very irritating film. It's like Bugsy Malone without the
songs. It all comes across as kids doing Film Noir for their school
project - badly. It is an unengaging story about an unlikable girl who
goes missing, and her miserable ex-boyfriend who tries to solve the big
mystery. Yawn. The dialogue is perhaps the most annoying part of Brick.
Clearly the writer has mistaken 'incomprehensible' for 'clever'. It's
all gabbled nonsense like "Jimmy C got goosed by the bulls and now I'm
half-galloned to Milwaukee. Find out where Eddie Cheerio hides his cake
and then meet me behind the Flapjack shop at a quarter past lunch." Or
In truth the film is slightly better than a 1, but is just so irritating in how smart it thinks it is that it needs bringing down a peg or two.
Well this was one of the movies I was really looking forward to see
this year, not only because the whole concept of the film sounded
exciting(for instance, on the DVD-box it said that it was the smartest
indie flick since Donnie Darko!), but also because it came highly
recommended by my brother, whom I consider(AND STILL DO)someone who
truly knows what he is talking about...
And I also consider myself one of the more experienced,open-minded movie-lovers...
But this film? Come on... I thought it was extremely boring, confusing, and full of really badly articulated and impossibly hard to understand(not only because of the language that was used, but mainly because they did not speak but mumble throughout),right from the start.
I wanted to give the film a chance though, convinced the genius aspect that I had missed so far, was still coming up, and that right then and there I would fully understand the greatness of the film.
Only that didn't happen...
I found myself not caring what happened to any of the characters in the movie, and it touched me in no way whatsoever...
Why?Why?Why? Why do people love this movie? What have I missed? You now I am typing these questions, but don't answer them,please. I really don't care...
Just a little advice...Don't waste your time on this piece of you know what...
The language is unintelligible and far from an homage to film noir - more it is an attempted rip off of the genre which falls flat on it's baby face. The plot, such as it is, is unbelievable, and I am reminded throughout that THESE ARE HIGH SCHOOL CHILDREN behaving badly. They are not hard-boiled detectives, they haven't earned the right to be hard-boiled. The filming is so flawed that it's almost impossible to concentrate on what IS going on without being distracted by all the flubs. Maybe people get-off on seeing children playing at being adults, I don't. I would suggest that you save your hard-earned money and rent a real classic film noir. Let this one die the unnatural death it deserves.
I am a true film lover. I watch for indie stuff and I respect efforts even if they are mediocre. "Brick" is an absolutely well-made student film, and that's where it should stay. Watching this in the West End after weeks of inclusion in "London's best films at the mo" list I went and watched it. Awful. Sound is horrible. Dialogue is trite if you can actually understand it. Locations are "no budget" and ineffective. The movie is not engaging (with 15 minutes I realised this was a major mistake) and at best will make you smile. Characterisation is bad. But all that is just not the real bottom line: it's damn boring and acts as a very long joke in cinematic reference. There is nothing brilliant about unless the whole production was under-aged, which would be admirable. Total rubbish - avoid at all costs. and I am writing this comment JUST because someone here must sound the siren, amongst all these favorable reviews. Can't get it how so many thinks highly of this flick. AVOID!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Why does everyone feel they must rave about a movie simply because it was not made by a major studio? This isn't just a movie about teenagers and starring teenagers, it looks as if teenagers wrote, produced, directed, filmed and edited it. Kids with a video camera could have made a film that looked better. There are way too many holes and credibility gaps in the story and far too many unsympathetic characters. They finally show Brendan in some pain, although he probably should have died from his untended to internal injuries a third of the way into the film, and the "profoundly moving" and carefully kept secret revealed at the end was hardly a secret, and not very meaningful. The use of a single key word as a title has become rather annoying, but there is a common street term for excrement used in the movie that would have served just as well.
This film is nothing more than an example of someone trying to be clever and seriously failing, ending up being smothered by their own pretentiousness. I watched (endured, suffered, was tortured by) this film at the Deauville Film Festival in Sebtember 2005 and I can safely say that this was, without any doubt and by a very big margin, the worst offering that I saw all week and I have to say I've struggled to find anything worse since then, even when I leave the DVD choice to my 10 year old son. The film is dull, turgid, lifeless and shambolic, it provides no interest or excitement and was viewed by myself as a waste of 110 minutes of my existence. If you want to spend some money and waste a few hours, got to a bar, have a few drinks, believe me you'll enjoy yourself more. If looking at glowing images on a faraway wall that offer you no intellectual stimulation whatsoever without any hint or promise of enjoyment then this is the film for you. For myself, it was too much like group voluntary euthanasia and not an enjoyable experience.
I tried stretching to watch this movie with an open mind, some 'arty'
movies take a while to build toward a payoff. But the clues that were
shown to me in this mystery pointed toward no payoff whatsoever, so I
didn't finish it. It sucks. I hadn't heard much about the movie, so I
was wondering 'is this an un-funny farce?'. I guess it isn't a farce,
it's supposed to be a noir. It's a disaster.
Unbelievably pretentious dialog, and 'hipster' speech. I thought that kind of talk died in the 1970s.
The mindset of the teenagers, trying to put forth this 'world' they supposedly live in, in a high school setting just doesn't fly. It's like a very, very bad high school play, painfully aware that these are just kids trying to be something they're not, never have been, and never will be. Even high school at it's worst was never that bad. Seriously, this film gives you respect for the portrayal of high school in Beverly Hills 90201, which at least had *some* believability to it, even if you didn't like it. In most films, with good or bad acting, I'm generally not aware that they are acting. Not the case here.
Pretension takes an even worse form in the wardrobes. I didn't check the spoilers box, and I'm new at this, so I'll be vague. All I'll say, is that I stopped the film and gave up at the introduction of a character, who was dressed too stupid for me to watch. (those reading this who have seen the film probably can guess who I'm talking about, lets just say he made the film a CAPEr)
You've got to have some respect for the audience This director, clearly doesn't. As for those who say that people who didn't like the film 'didn't get it', ie, modern film noir, compare this to 'Match Point', made the same year. This film is just a very tired rip-off of whatever it was trying to reference.
The saddest thing is, since the film had popularity, there may be outsider kids who try to model some of this style in their own high schools, and it's going to take them down another notch they cant afford
There's so much bad to say about this movie, and so little space...
a)World-weary cynicism works in 30-40 year olds. In kids this age, it's
just irritating. b) No likable characters whatsoever c) No believable
characters whatsoever d) All of the bad guys are straight out of "Bugsy
Malone", but lose their appeal due to lack of Splat Guns. e) Plot that
consists entirely of holes. The plot is also hamstrung by points b) and
c) in that you really don't care what happens to the horrid little
It's overly knowing, references films to which it's the palest of pale imitations, tediously shot, and it's fairly obvious that the only direction the actors were given were a bunch of magic markers and a pack of valium. Should not be watched by anyone under the age of 20 (will make them think they're cleverer than they really are) or over the age of 20 (risk of dangerously high blood pressure).
We had high hopes for this film from the trailers and the reviews. We
had to walk out after 30 minutes. Maybe it was just the print we saw,
but the sound quality was abysmal -- overly loud, fuzzy, and half the
dialog was incomprehensible (as in: can't even make out the words,
forget about what they might mean). What we could make out was clearly
trying to be Raymond Chandler noir, but it was totally unbelievable
coming out of the mouths of unformed and apparently characterless SoCal
high school kids. Too many of the scenes were clearly chosen because
no-one would be around during filming -- they didn't establish a sense
of place, they just screamed "we have no budget". The hero couldn't act
his way out of a paper bag. He gave us absolutely no reason to be
interested in him, and no reason to believe he had any idea what he was
doing, although he was clearly supposed to be on the ball.
Very disappointing. Went home and watched Veronica Mars instead. Equally unbelievable but far more engaging.
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