starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lukas Haas, Zora Zehetner, and Emilie De Ravin
directed by Rian Johnson
written by Rian Johnson
It’s hard to find a good movie that can modernize the classic noir genre while still keeping it fresh and faithful to the classics, but Brick achieves this amazingly. When wallflower Brendan (Gordon-Levitt) finds his ex-girlfriend dead, he takes it upon himself to do whatever it takes to find out what led to her death, pushing through a world of crime to find the answers. In turn, Brendan faces an ensemble of classic mystery archetypes such as Zehetner’s enigmatic socialite and Haas’ drug kingpin. This is no simple high school sleuth story though; the story is gritty and dark, a thrilling roller-coaster ride rich in drama and tension. It asks you to suspend your disbelief to a degree in believing that all such things could happen to a bunch of high school students, but the film’s goal is certainly not realism, but to deliver a mystical noir reminiscent of the smoky black and white pictures of the 40’s and 50’s. This is without a doubt Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s magnum opus, his performance as the defiant protagonist is raw and captivating. The dialogue is fast-paced, witty and well-designed, with conversation sliding together like jigsaw puzzle pieces. The cast delivers the dialogue with a precision that makes it fascinating. The plot is unpredictable and complex. It’s labyrinthian design pulls the audience alongwithout skipping a beat, relentlessly delivering intrigue. It’s got innovative cinematography, that is used as a story telling element as effectively as the others. Rian Johnson’s Brick is an unbridled tour-de-force, an unstoppable neo-noir mystery entrenched in intricate twists and turns. Brick is a go-to for suspense and thrills; it is the epitome of what hard-boiled crime drama should be.
Final Score: 4.5 out of 5