I’m a fan of both his films, Brick and The Brothers Bloom, especially the latter. How do you guys feel? Is anyone else really surprised the website has ignored both? I loved the acting across both films, I love Nathan Johnson’s compositions for the films, and most I love the writing ESPECIALLY in Bloom. Even if someone couldn’t care less about these details, it’s very simply a beautiful film.
Surprised you haven’t gotten any reactions. I was a big fan of Brick — despite the over-writing, I thought JGL made a great main character, and the pacing, atmosphere, and interjections of humor and strangeness made it a memorable experience. Haven’t seen The Brothers Bloom… it looks like a fun movie, though, so I’m sure I’ll rent it at some point.
Anyway, I’m excited to see what else the guy directs. I think he could do nice work, as long as he keeps his movies conceptual and doesn’t go overboard on the stylization.
just saw “brothers bloom” a few weeks ago. typical hollywood product. nothing noteworthy or interesting. very predictable, even on the level of style. hustler kids wearing black suits walking in slow motion to pop music, episodic structure with on-screen titles to mark each one, blah blah blah. “edgy and cool” with the emphasis on the quotation marks.
really dug Brick, the Brothers Bloom doesn’t look particularly good.
I loved BRICK. It was a wonderful take on film-noir. I thought the old gumshoe slang was brilliant and it gave the film its authenticity. Rian Johnson was trying to stay true to the genre and not just make any high school movie.
Brothers Bloom was a pleasure to watch thanks to its stylization but it didn’t really leave me with anything. Yes, BRICK is very stylized too but there is substance behind that noir look. But I would definitely recommend that fans of Rian at least rent Brothers Bloom.
Saw Brothers Bloom and was very disappointed. Didn’t see any reason to care for the characters.
Saw Brick after to give the director another try, but found it to be just ridiculous. Looking back, I might not have agreed with mixing the noir story with the stylized actions. Couldn’t finish it. Will give it a try in the future as everyone seems to enjoy it.
I really liked the concept behind Brick and the casting of Joseph Gordon Leavitt in the lead. Heard luke-warm responses about Bloom, so I never saw it.
I think Brick’s high degree of stylization may have turned some people off. Rian Johnson himself said that spectators would either love it or hate it. He used key elements of the noir genre/movement to capture in a heightened way what it feels like to be an adolescent. The suburb was almost like it’s own underworld where no outside authority could step in. I guess since the film is so rooted in the classic characteristics of film-noir, you won’t be a fan of the film if you’re not too crazy about the genre.
I am not a particularly big fan of the man.
Rian is one of my favorite directors. Brick and The Brothers Bloom are great films. The poetic, noir style of Brick is incredible!
I really enjoyed Brick and have yet to see Brothers Bloom. Also enjoyed his music video for Woke Up New by The Mountain Goats. By the way, I love how the man himself posts in this thread and no one notices. Great work Rian, keep it up.
I didn’t like either film. Brick seemed sort of ridulous, in a Bugsy Malone sort of way while The Brothers Bloom was keen on style but absent on anything else. I know Rian is gaining quite a cult following but for the life of me I can’t figure out why. His films lack any sort of engaging connection to human emotion that I can relate to and therefore they leave me saying, “So what?”
Bobby Wise: “typical hollywood product.”
I completely disagree with you there, “The Brother’s Bloom” is not typically Hollywood at all. I can’t think of any other recent Hollywood movie about con artists that has a Japanese mute-girl who blows shit up.
I really enjoyed both “Brick” and “Brothers Bloom”. In fact, I would have to say I liked “Brothers Bloom” more. It showed what he could do with a bigger budget and it worked out great IMO. And to me, his writing is top notch. I actually do connect with all of the characters in both films, I don’t know why some of you don’t. He knows how to balance everything in his screenplays…characters, emotion, action (for lack of a better word), tension, buildup, payoff, etc. To me, that’s a very rare thing in movies these days and something I always try to aspire for when I’m working on my own.
Jesse – Why do you think Brick was “overwritten”? What makes you come to this conclusion?
no recent movies about con artists? theres been so many that i havent seen them all. its not a subgenre thats lacking in examples by any means.
and the asian sidekick with a quirk who is either an expert fighter or a specialist in something unique? i guess thats never been done before either.
im usually not a politically correct guy, or overly-sensitive to racial/ethnic things, but i just couldnt help but feel uneasy at the depiction of “bang bang.” the only multi-cultural image in the film is of someone who’s a mute servant. that silence spoke volumes to me. sorry, im not trying to preach, or play any cards. in fact, the film is so weak to me that its not even really worth delving into.
Brick is absolutely amazing. It is extremely classy, really entertaining, oozes style, features some of the best music out there as well as some awesome characters (thanks to equally awesome performances), the emotional stuff really works well and there is a great sense of mystery throughout. A brilliant combination of artistic inclination, top-notch storytelling and raw entertainment that currently sits near the lower end of my Top 10.
I agree with Wise concerning the problematic nature of the Asian character Bang Bang. I’ve seen a lot of versions of the cute little quiet Asian girl in cinema. Doesn’t bode well for the portrayal of women in film. Women need to have a stronger voice. Jane Campion’s film, The Piano does a great job of showcasing a woman who is a mute that is able to overcome the male gaze that dominates cinema.
I think he’s very talented. The Brothers Bloom didn’t get the praise it should have. Brick was good but The Brothers Bloom was an excellent film that’s under-appreciated in my mind.
I’m not saying he invented the con artist genre. Of course con artist movies have been done before, you’re right that is a sub genre. But that’s not the point, the execution is where it’s at. The different things that he mixes INTO this con artist movie is not your typical Hollywood stuff. It’s done in a fresh way.
What Hollywood movies about con artists have come out lately that include a Japanese sidekick? I’m curious.
Duplicity was WAY better. And Duplicity wasn’t even that great.
Hell, even Redbelt was better than The Brothers Bloom. In fact, pretty much any David Mamet schlock is better.
whats unique about the execution? his film form seems flat and borrowed to me. what are the different things he mixes into his con artist movie that are fresh and atypical?
Reason enough to hate him: he spells his first name with an I.
What the hell…?
I haven’t seen Brothers Bloom but I loved Brick. It was just so exciting, the entire time. Plus, the character is somewhat more relatable than most noir heroes – I mean, sure, very few people went to high school and had their girlfriend killed, got into knife fights, or even talked to their principal like he does – but even fewer people are spies or big-time criminals. It felt more human (at least to me), while still amping up the stylization.
I agree with many of you, I loved Brick and thought it was even better than many of my friends who suggested it to me said it was but have no interest in Bloom unless a bunch of people on this site say it’s amazing …
Brick was an auspicious debut. I thought it would err on the side of its high concept but the whole gambit worked surprisingly well. Brothers Bloom, on the other hand, is an utter disaster. It wears its tired and unoriginal Wes Andersonisms on its sleeve (anachronistically dressed kids up to high concept hijinks walking while being filmed in slow motion? give me a fucking break!) and makes the same mistake of layering characters in quirks at the expense of developing interesting or real characters. The “cons” were poorly conceived and pointlessly convoluted. The love story was a total washout. The performances were pretty weak too. Brody increasingly seems like a one-dimensional actor.