Brotherly Love

Jim Sheridan, Tobey Maquire, Natalie Portman, Jake Gyllenhaal; that should be enough reasons to go and watch it. Or rent it.

Here’s another great little film. They’re all great actors in their limited ways and especially Tobey Maquire delivers. He is absolute amazing and his transformation during the film is really quite shocking. I’d say it’s his best performance since The Ice Storm or Deconstructing Harry, or perhaps ever.  Sam Shepard is in it too by the way.

Maybe this film doesn’t offer much new, but the way it’s told, it’s not exactly your average senseless entertainment. There’s definitely more to it than that. Considering the structure of the film, it works surprisingly well. Great drama. Even a few funny bits like every films should. But it’s still not quite the same as Trading Places.

The American Dream, by Jim Sheridan

Now this is not a new film – every now and then I find a film I shouldn’t have missed when it first came out.

I recently watched Brothers, which reminded me that there’s a very good director called Jim Sheridan, and I decided to check what films by him I might have missed. So I came across In America, done before Sheridan’s next ‘hit’ or miss, Get Rich or Die Tryin’. Very powerful and heartwarming story with two simply adorable child actresses who completely steal the show, literally, all the time. Samantha Morton plays mum, and Paddy Considine plays dad, and they are both very good too giving great performances. And Djimon Hounsou‘s character is the finishing touch.

The story is simple, but on another level very fulfilling, and clearly very personal to Sheridan himself. In America is not the latest blockbuster, but there haven’t been many better films in the last couple of years.

Notorious East Coast


Nowadays, you have to be careful when you go watch a movie of a certain type. Maybe similarly to the movie with 50 Cent. I thought that since it’s directed by Jim Sheridan it should somehow be worth watching. And even then you can go wrong.  But I did think Get Rich or Die Tryin’ was ok. Notorious is directed by George Tillman Jr. whose not the most productive director around – I mean quantity, not saying anything about the quality. He’s directed Men of Honor before, about 8 or 9 years ago.

I wrote in some earlier post about a certain structure in films where you know what’s going to happen. I think that was the post about Milk. Here we get that again. They all seem to be the same. I think I’ll have to watch a few more just to make sure it’s a common way of dealing with this kind of situation. It’s probably the way American film studios try to solve the problem of not-so-happy ending that cannot be re written to be a happy ending. I’m not giving anything away, you should know what happens to ‘Biggie’.

Jamal Woolard is amazingly good. As is most of the cast. Naturi Naughton is probably my favourite after Jamal. She’s brilliant. Although I believe Lil Kim had boob job after she became famous…

As a film it’s maybe average, but good looking flick. Entertaining enough. I thought it has a strange feel and approach to some issues it’s dealing with and maybe that makes the movie worth watching, although it does occasionally make the film feel less well figured out and shallow. Not that there’s anything wrong with shallow necessarily. But to me it did seem like the emotional and other parts of the films would have been written and directed by different people and are completely different level. But well worth watching. more so than Be Kind Rewind which I won’t even bother writing about. Mind you, a true Jack Black fan will disagree.