Brooklyn
While this was a cute little piece about the struggles of a young woman moving into the big unknown of New York City in 1950 from a small little village in Ireland with nice and likable characters, I struggle to find the special sauce which made this movie so well-perceived with all the critics and especially nominations for best picture and best actress in a leading role - but I am also just a small-town blogger 🙂
Acting
Directing
Script
Cinematography
Timeless
The Good
  • Really nice and likable characters
  • Lots of Irish accent
  • Beautful production design of the 1950s
The bad
  • Trailer literally gives everything away - super annoying
  • Movie does not live to the high marks received by the critics IMO
3.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (0 Votes)

NOTE: This review was in my draft folder for quite some time…

After all “stress” from trying to finish all the nominated films just in time for the Oscar ceremony 2016 has settled, I now had the time to also take a stab at the “low-riders” of this years’ Academy Awards which are still on my Oscar Watch list (which just in case you care) – looks like this

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Now let’s get to today’s review of Brooklyn. The story of a young Irish girl emigrating to New York of the 1950s and building up her new life while missing her life and family in her hometown in Ireland. Quite frankly, if this movie would have not been nominated for three Academy Awards in two major categories (Best Picture and Best Actress in a leading role), I would probably foregone this one. And while I am being frank, I am struggling to find this movie so outstanding that it deserved that level of recognition from the Academy – let me explain why (this will spoil the entire movie but so does the trailer already – so if you plan to still watch it, avoid both):

imageMany features of this film were really appealing and interesting – as a former immigrant to the US myself, I could very well connect with the heroine Ellis in this film who (obviously in a much different time) leaves her life in Ireland behind and seeks a better in life in the big United States. The first few weeks and months are brutally lonley for her and all she can think of is her beloved family and friends back home. The film does also a great job of displaying that moving into the big wild world is not always (or actuelly quite often) not as glamorous as it appears and that the courage to start a new life comes with the big price tag of being very lonley in the early stages of this new chapter. The pace of the movie is quite nice as well, as it goes to show the “bettering” of Ellis’ life step-by-step; first she starts night school to learn a new craft (Accounting) and then she meets a nice italian fella from Brooklyn who is in complete awe with her. Everything is bascially moving into the fairy tale direction until the turn – Ellis has to return home for a family emergency – and during her stay at home, a lot of things have changed. She no longer is the little girl who worked in the bakery, she now is preceived as the one who made it over to America and is living in New York now. And of course (pretty cliché) as she returns home to Ireland from her now fairy tale life in New York, another man in her hometown starts to like her (and after the cliché brief moment of dislike on her part), she totally likes him back. And things start to come together for her in her hometown as she is offered a job as an accountant (her dreamjob) with the perfect Irish bo. Should she stay or should she go? And then there is an incident (which I found to be kind of random), which washes away all her reservations about staying vs. Going and she jumps right back to the next ferry for New York and runs back into the arms of her short Italian fella – because that is where she belongs.

— FIN —

Sorry, I guess I spoiled this one a little bit. And I did like this movie for the mentioned reason of portraying the home sickness of a recent immigrant to the United States. Also the actors and characters are really nice and likeable, especially Saorise Ronan and her awesome Irish accent. It is good story and it lets you connect with all the characters in it. But quite honestly, I didn’t get why it would receive 90+% on Rottentomatoes and the three mentioned nominations. This movie actually calls for yet another #AcademySoWhite outcry – I mean come on. You can nominate Brooklyn (sort-of vanilla story of white Irish Girl emigrating to the US) but you can’t nominate Dope (a really cool and innovative story of a black kid from Inglewood, CA who tries to trick the system to make his dream come true) and/or Beasts of No Nation (a distrubing but important movie about the cruelties happening every day in war-torn zones in Africa with amazing acting performances) – I could go and on. But I am sure that I will feel even stronger about this once I have watched 99 Homes (which is still a white movie but more “important”) and Concussion.

So all in all – another good example of complete overhype by the Academy. This was certainly a solid film but really nothing that blew it out of the water for me.

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