JOBLO'S MOVIE REVIEWS

SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Brick (2006)
star Printer-Friendly version
Review Date: January 04, 2007
Director: Rian Johnson
Writer: Rian Johnson
Producers: Ram Bergman, Mark Mathis
Actors:
Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Brendan
Lukas Haas as The Pin
Noah Fleiss as Tugger
Plot:
A dude named Brendan notices that his ex-girlfriend Emily is missing and decides to hook up with his buddy Brain in order to figure how she disappeared, while grilling friends like Kara and Dode, and underground cats like Tugger and The Pin. Got all that? Well, yeah, itís a little convoluted, but pretty easy to follow, although not all that interesting, to be honest with you. A different kind of high school flick ensues.
Critique:
Iím all for creative writing, unique circumstances and originality when it comes to any type of film, specifically anything to do with high school and not featuring mean girls being bitches, dudes drinking and looking to get laid and teachers and parents being all-around sticks-in-the-mud, but even though writer/director Rian Johnson slaps together an incredibly different kind of high school movie here (think film noir meeting David Lynch at a youth rally), the end result isnít really all that entertaining, with one-dimensional characters spouting hip dialogue, but ultimately, not meaning all that much. In fact, my biggest peeve with the film would have to be its most important element: the story. I honestly wasnít all that interested in what was going on in this film, and even though the directing was cool, the dialogue fun to decipher and the characters somewhat unique, I honestly didnít give a shit about anyone in the movie, even less so the girl that the lead character was attempting to find, and even less than that, the story on the whole. About an hour into it all, I asked myself if I could simply walk away from the movie and not care one way or the other, and the response was an enthusiastic ďHell yeah!!Ē.

But like I said earlier, there were also elements about the film that I did like, so I was a little torn when it came to writing this review, as I most certainly liked the filmís ambition, its avant-garde dialogue and the persistence of the lead character (played nicely by Heath Ledger look-alike Joseph Gordon-Levittóof TVís ď3rd Rock from the SunĒ fame), but all of that other stuff balanced those better things off, leading to a middle-of-the-road score for the film as a whole. It also ended on a pretty lame note, with a final twist that didnít really need to be there, and just made it all that much more complicated (particularly if you look back and see how amazingly prophetic one of the characters needed to be in order to pull some of that stuff off). The character named Tugs was also pretty annoying, and even though the character named The Pin was cool as shit, againÖthey balanced each other off, so the bad got rid of the good. I am glad that they decided to slip a cutie into the mix though (Nora Zehetner), because all of those guys getting beat up and constantly mouthing off at one another got a little old after a while. And one more thing, I donít think the film on the whole was pretentious, but I have to say that despite doing my best to downplay any pretentiousness, it ultimately creeped through a little, which also didnít help. Then again, I really liked the filmís score, so thereís another zero-sum.

So do I recommend that you see this movie? Well, if you feel like youíre in the mood to see a high school mystery that plays things like an adult world of film noir with dialogue complex enough to confuse your parents, you may want to check it out, if only because you might actually really like it. As for me, Iím riding this one right down the middle so I canít really recommend it to anyone, unless itís one of those lazy video nights and youíre in the mood to experiment. PS: I thought the one scene featuring The Pinís mom was very, very funny (in that HEATHERS sorta way), but on the whole, really out of place, when you consider that no other scenes featured any adults mixing into this groovy bleak underground created by these kids. Felt like another movie thereÖa much better one, in fact! (call it THE PIN and Iím there!)
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian
Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

12:31AM on 01/14/2007
I had a really hard time believing all that was going on was going on with high school students. This was basically a film noir with high school students, and it just didn't work for me.

The list of one-dimensional characters kept growing and getting more stupid. The thug in the white cap with the limited vocabulary was a joke, the actress/dancer/whatever had no point in the movie, the nerdy friend was just an easy way out to get the main character to the next scene, the "femme fatale" who
I had a really hard time believing all that was going on was going on with high school students. This was basically a film noir with high school students, and it just didn't work for me.

The list of one-dimensional characters kept growing and getting more stupid. The thug in the white cap with the limited vocabulary was a joke, the actress/dancer/whatever had no point in the movie, the nerdy friend was just an easy way out to get the main character to the next scene, the "femme fatale" who noone knows whether she's good or bad is cliche as hell, and don't get me started on the mysterious Pin. I don't know if it was the casting or the character itself, but that was one lame ass character. I think it was worse because he had a cane. And the fact that his mother handed out treats to two "gangs" at 4 o'clock in the morning was just pathetic.

And why were the two gangs there? I thought the two "leaders" were part of the same gang - one working for the other - but all of a sudden, one kills a guy in the other's presence, and then they're at war with armies in tow. I'm still not sure what the ending is about, but I saw the femme fatale part coming a mile away.

I'll give the director props for style; I liked a lot the shots he used, and Joseph-Gordon Levitt did a decent job throughout, but the story didn't fit the setting, the characters were lame and one-dimensional, and the ending is a total letdown.
Your Reply:



4:53AM on 01/10/2007

I'm not usually that guy, but...

...I'm guessing this film just wasn't for you. I'm far from the type that suggests that art films are the best thing going and Hollywood produces nothing but crap. Also, I despise David Lynch. I don't 'get' him. However, I absolutely loved Brick -- I think it's honestly the best film I've seen from 2006. I think it's just so different from anything else out there. The dialogue was fantastic. The plot was interesting. Most importantly, every one of the actors understood what Rian Johnson
...I'm guessing this film just wasn't for you. I'm far from the type that suggests that art films are the best thing going and Hollywood produces nothing but crap. Also, I despise David Lynch. I don't 'get' him. However, I absolutely loved Brick -- I think it's honestly the best film I've seen from 2006. I think it's just so different from anything else out there. The dialogue was fantastic. The plot was interesting. Most importantly, every one of the actors understood what Rian Johnson was going for, and played along wonderfully.

Having said all of that, I've recommended this to several of my friends, and none of them enjoyed it nearly as much as I did. In fact, most of them described it as, "okay." I'm thinking that this movie is made for with a certain audience in mind, though I'd recommend everyone give this one a chance. It may just be your scene. You'll know within 20 minutes.
Your Reply:



4:25PM on 01/09/2007

8 or 9/10

I gotta disagree with you on this one Jo...I thought Brick was so original, smart, witty and not reliant on the same old CGI crap that people have become so reliant on as of late. This movie made me think as I walked out of the theatre and kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. Do as many of these people say and give it another go. Smart, witty, fun, a nice return to the noir.
I gotta disagree with you on this one Jo...I thought Brick was so original, smart, witty and not reliant on the same old CGI crap that people have become so reliant on as of late. This movie made me think as I walked out of the theatre and kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. Do as many of these people say and give it another go. Smart, witty, fun, a nice return to the noir.
Your Reply:



1:48PM on 01/09/2007

Guess I have to say it again

Heath Ledger look-a-like? That's just re-goddamn-diculous.
Heath Ledger look-a-like? That's just re-goddamn-diculous.
Your Reply:



7:40PM on 01/08/2007

Watch it again.

Watch it again, Jo. The first time I saw it, I was like you, about a 5 or 6 outta' ten. But the second time, I got into the story so much more, even though I knew what would happened, and ended up really liking it. The directing is downright beautiful in most cases as well. Sun-faded color, amazing balance, and real patience in the acting a cutting. I Loved it. Please try it again.
Watch it again, Jo. The first time I saw it, I was like you, about a 5 or 6 outta' ten. But the second time, I got into the story so much more, even though I knew what would happened, and ended up really liking it. The directing is downright beautiful in most cases as well. Sun-faded color, amazing balance, and real patience in the acting a cutting. I Loved it. Please try it again.
Your Reply:



11:25AM on 01/08/2007

overrated

Joblo, you definitely spoke my mind on this one. I have friends who worship this movie but to me it was just okay. But don't tell that to anyone who likes it or you get your head ripped off for "not getting it."
Joblo, you definitely spoke my mind on this one. I have friends who worship this movie but to me it was just okay. But don't tell that to anyone who likes it or you get your head ripped off for "not getting it."
Your Reply:



11:02AM on 01/08/2007

A little overrated, but certainly interesting

BRICK is a bit overrated in my opinion, but it was an interesting to see someone try to take the noir genre and dump it into a high school setting. I don't think it always works, but it was fascinating to watch none-the-less.
BRICK is a bit overrated in my opinion, but it was an interesting to see someone try to take the noir genre and dump it into a high school setting. I don't think it always works, but it was fascinating to watch none-the-less.
Your Reply:



10:59AM on 01/08/2007

Misguided

This could have been a much better flick. The high-school setting just seemed incredibly misguided to me. Did the filmmakers have any reason for setting this in a high-school? Set this flick in the 30's and I'd be down with it. Maybe it's because I've been out of high-school for 10 years...but I just wasn't in to it. It certainly didn't help that not a single character in the film was likable at all.
This could have been a much better flick. The high-school setting just seemed incredibly misguided to me. Did the filmmakers have any reason for setting this in a high-school? Set this flick in the 30's and I'd be down with it. Maybe it's because I've been out of high-school for 10 years...but I just wasn't in to it. It certainly didn't help that not a single character in the film was likable at all.
Your Reply:



2:23AM on 01/08/2007

Wow...

Wow...I don't know what happened. I used to be on the nose with almost every review JoBlo had...but it's almost like any film that involves thinking or isn't cool on a "high" level doesn't get points on this site anymore. I really don't understand.

A fantastic movie with innovative direction, fantastic characters and an actual independent budget for once under 250,000 (as it seems 5,000,000 seems to be the magic hip indie number these days). If your a fan of film noir in any sense of the
Wow...I don't know what happened. I used to be on the nose with almost every review JoBlo had...but it's almost like any film that involves thinking or isn't cool on a "high" level doesn't get points on this site anymore. I really don't understand.

A fantastic movie with innovative direction, fantastic characters and an actual independent budget for once under 250,000 (as it seems 5,000,000 seems to be the magic hip indie number these days). If your a fan of film noir in any sense of the word then this film is most definately for you.
Your Reply:



1:25AM on 01/08/2007

Average

While it was inventive and different that doesn't necessarily mean it was a great movie.
While it was inventive and different that doesn't necessarily mean it was a great movie.
Your Reply:



JoBlo's T-Shirt Shoppe | support our site... Wear Our Gear!