The music is fun, the lobsters are omnipresent, and the story is engrossing. Enjoy!
Brooklyn Lobster (2005)
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The music is fun, the lobsters are omnipresent, and the story is engrossing. Enjoy!
It is the way of the world, It is the truth of the hardship of living.
Based on a true Brooklyn story about an Italian family in the middle of some rocky patches.
The lines and thoughts stay with you long after the movie has ended. The characters just felt like people that I know. People with real problems nothing melodramatic which was nice to see.
Lobster farm tells the story of a small business and the family that defines it. Or maybe it's the other way around As the plot and characters are introduced we begin to see how closely the identity of the individuals and of the family as a whole are tied to their small business.
Through the day to day routines and an unusual string of events, we discover each person and a chance to see ourselves.
One by one, we get both a comedic and quirky peek into their individual stories leading in to a more serious look at the gravity of what family business and the family are faced with.
All in all , because of the story, the acting and the direction, Lobsterfarnm feels very real. It makes you laugh like your laughing with family. It makes you worry like you would about your own. Ultimately it paints a portrait of a family with all it's facets that is a real gem.
Every performance is nuanced, every character flawed, every joke funny... and it clearly a labor of love. I look forward to when this movie is released in more theaters so I can see it again. Who doesn't want to watch something that makes you feel good in an entirely plausible context? It is nice to escape when you are the movies, but it also nice to believe what you are escaping to can happen.
I actually believed the people in this movie were a family and cared about each other. And who knew that the lobster business would be so interesting?
All this is happening around Christmas. Michael, the son who has left Brooklyn to make a name for himself in Seattle, returns for a visit with his fiancée, the gorgeous Kerry, whose family is rich and might be interested in investing in his father failing business. Michael is torn between his own ambition about the company he has established in the West Coast, or come to the help of his old man.
"Brooklyn Lobster" was a rare surprise to find the other night on cable. It's a story written and directed by Kevin Jordan, who evidently knows what he is talking about, since it appears it has some biographical slant to it. The film involves the viewer because the situation at the center of the story feels plausible. It's a different kind of story without following any formula.
Mr. Jordan was lucky in finding Danny Aiello, an actor that always projects honesty in his work, to impersonate the older Giorgio. Mr. Aiello is one of the best reasons for watching the film, as he pulls us into the story without any effort. Daniel Sauli is also good as Michael, the son who has left, only to come back and finds out things are not good at home. Jane Curtin, a rarely used actress, plays Maureen, the wife that has decided to move on, rather than to stay with Frank, yet, she still stays close to home.
This is a film that feels real from beginning to end thanks to the solid writing by Kevin Jordan and his clear view of a family in trouble.
It was interesting to see a movie take place in New York City, but not in Manhattan for once.
This film unfolds gently giving us a glimpse of a struggling family. The characters are flawed but likable and the actors seem to really embrace the roles. The fact that the film is based on the director's real family makes it all the more poignant.
It succeeded in drawing me in as I started to worry about the fate of their Lobster business. Watching the main character struggle with his family while trying to get his own life in order seemed both familiar and honest in its frank portrayal.
Well done! I look forward to seeing more works by this talented film maker.
I am a sucker for independent film productions. Having gotten tired of all the glitz and special effects in a typical Hollywood film, I deliberately seek out plot-driven films where characters actually are important (a crazy concept, I know). So it's not at all surprising that I watched BROOKLYN LOBSTER. However, in hindsight, I wish I probably hadn't because the main character (played by Danny Aiello) is a very selfish jerk. At times you can understand and sympathize with his plight, but even if times were good, he STILL would have been a jerk. And because he is so integral to the plot, the overall impact of the film is diminished. Watchable and full of good acting, yes, but still not particularly outstanding or fun to watch.
Also, be forewarned--the language is a tad intense at times. The easily offended should probably stay clear.
The film also does an excellent of giving the audience a sense of place, without ever turning into a travelogue. The only "I'm being taught about lobster farms" moment I had was when a character explained that they don't actually breed lobsters, which I thought was rather interesting. Other factual details emerge naturally from the story.
I had read a few print reviews of "Brooklyn Lobster" earlier, so I was aware that some critics had been rather unenthusiastic. My reaction while seeing it was that if this had been a foreign film with a no-name cast, it would have been praised for "defying the canons of conventional storytelling" or something like that. It's certainly a film worth seeing, and goes on my personal top ten list for 2005.
Due to a derogatory comment by another review on this site, I feel I should mention that I had nothing to do with this film, and don't know anyone who is connected with it.
The family patriarch is played by Danny Aiello who shows us a strong, single-minded man. He is stubborn and has many flaws, but beneath beats the proverbial heart of gold. He loves his business and its traditions and attempts to move heaven and earth to save it from the bankers who are trying to foreclose.
Jane Curtin is excellent as the marriage-weary wife who has decided to divorce herself from the conflict of the business and from a man who sees only the business and nothing else. Most people think of comedy if Curtin is involved, but her range as an actor enables her to take a part such as this and make it her own. She beautifully portrays a woman who has become fed up with her live yet can move on without bitterness.
Daniel Sauli plays the son who has managed to escape the trials of the family business but is conflicted with the desire to help his father. He gives us a realistic picture of a young man caught between the love of his girlfriend and his new life and the love and devotion to his father.
All this is combined with a spate of superior supporting actors who combine with worthy writing and insightful directing to produce a film about real life with all the humor and heartbreak that it involves.
If you decide to give this film a viewing, be sure to view the special features on the DVD as they will enhance your pleasure by giving you a look at the real people upon whom the film is based.
Giorgio's Lobster Farm has been in the Giorgio family for years and has recently come on hard times: the bank defaulted on the note held by the business and the business faces foreclosure - and even worse, it will be auctioned off, removing it permanently from the family. Frank Giorgio (Danny Aiello) is trying to keep his business alive, neglecting his wife Maureen (Jane Curtin) who is tired of living with the crustaceans, and depending on his daughter Lauren (Marisa Ryan) to be his computer, and trying to convince his son Michael (Daniel Sauli) to return to New York from his home in Seattle to help run the business. Michael's steady girlfriend Kerry (Heather Burns) supports the concept of saving the business but when her family gets involved an incident occurs which damages all concerned. How Frank's close friend Bill Lau (Henry Yuk) and wife Jen (Jo Yang) step into the failing picture builds to a climax that demonstrates how family, love, extended family, friends, and perseverance can heal just about anything! The cast is excellent with Danny Aiello, Jane Curtin and Daniel Sauli especially fine. But the overwhelming result of this little film is a restoration of faith in the human spirit - with a lot of help from family and friends. Grady Harp
I think that what made the movie especially effective was the Yuletide setting. It reminds us that while so many people are merrily eating dinner and opening presents, a number of individuals - possibly more than half of us - are struggling just to get by, with or without tragedy striking. As it is, I got the feeling that Frank felt pretty disgusted with how the surrounding world was celebrating, and that drove him to do some of the angry things that he did.
So, this is certainly a movie that I recommend. See it if possible.