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The Brave One
DVD disk
Feb 5, 2008 By: Jason Adams
The Brave One order
Director:
Neil Jordan

Actors:
Jodie Foster
Terrence Howard
Nicky Katt

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Jodie Foster is Batman.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Theres a reason these kinds of stories keep getting told over and over; maybe theres something about the act of revenge that touches our base instincts of love, loss or personal morality. Who hasnt been wronged in some way and didnt immediately want to see the other person get what they deserve, preferably as painfully as possible. So that may justify why THE BRAVE ONE exists, but does it make it worthwhile for audiences?

I suppose it is, if you dont mind watching the same vigilante movie youve seen all those other times before. Initially, THE BRAVE ONE presents us with what seems to be a more dramatic take on the material, as Jodie Foster struggles with getting over her slain fiance and dealing with all the frustration and helplessness of her shattered world. But within a few minutes of screen time, the tone quickly shifts and Foster has literally bought a gun, put on sunglasses, picked up smoking, and is ready to start going Bronson on the bad guys.

And Im not going to lie; it is somewhat fulfilling seeing her get medieval on people who deserve it, but it still feels like a rehashDEATH WISH with estrogen. The inclusion of talented arthouse director Neil Jordan brought some hopejust the idea of Jordan making a genre picture was excitingbut he cant elevate the material enough. Its definitely a well-made film, visually intriguing in spots with skewed camera angles and the like, but the script (which Jordan did not write) is lacking anything fresh. For one, it harps on the Isnt killing scum doing society a service? debate that has been done in previous movies. And the rest of it feels almost like a stereotypical action movie, even down to the bad one liners. (I want my dog back! Seriously?)

Jodie Foster gives a very strong performance and is consistently believable in the aggressive role, which makes the whole thing easier to swallow but cant completely salvage her characters issues with logic. She automatically doesnt trust or help the cops on her case, for no real reason other than they make her wait in the lobby for more than five minutes. (And if you took a shot every time she says a line about being a stranger or not being her old self, youd be wasted before the halfway mark.) Same with Terrence Howard, whos also great, but figures things out too conveniently and too quickly. Probably the only person who comes off scot-free is the always-a-pleasure Nicky Katt, who gets to let loose and crack wise whenever hes on screen.
THE EXTRAS
I Walk The City (21:36): A very well-made Behind The Scenes piece, with Jordan and Foster discussing the films thematics in depth.

Additional Scenes (6:25): Nothing much, although a couple supporting characters who get sidelined are given additional screen time.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
THE BRAVE ONE brings up some interesting viewpoints on vigilantism and justice, but its nothing that we havent seen before in similar movies. And even with Fosters performance and Jordans direction it cant completely escape some more of the ridiculous aspects of its script.

Extra Tidbit: Its weird hearing Sayid from LOST talk in his normal British accent.
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