Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Box Office Review - Harry Brown

Looking through Michael Caine’s filmography is like looking at a list of great movies. At the age of 77 he is still busy working as a supporting actor in some of the best movies of the last decade. In Children of Men, The Prestige, and The Dark Knight he has solid supporting roles. In Harry Brown Caine plays the lead role and he proves why he is one of the greatest actors in film history. The movie opens with a very disturbing scene of some South London hooligans riding around a housing complex on a motorbike. I am leaving out the disturbing part of this opening as not to spoil anything, but trust me this scene establishes how messed up the youth are in this area. The character of Harry Brown is a former Royal Marine living in an apartment complex in South London. He has to deal with the harassment of the local youth gangs on a daily basis. After a series of events that change his life, Brown decides to stand up against the ruffians in the area. Caine plays Brown expertly. The character goes through a transition from being scared of his surroundings to being the master of them. Caine does this transformation very convincingly, and not once does Brown seem like some kind of super hero. All the action scenes are very tense and while some of the scenes are slow they are always compelling. This is due to the great directing of Daniel Barber, a first time feature director. My one problem with the film is the ending. I would have preferred a much simpler tale of revenge then what is presented. The movie throws a twist into the film that I felt wasn’t necessary, but it doesn’t take away from how good the rest of the movie is. Harry Brown is a film about one man doing something to change his terrible surroundings. Harry Brown is a cinematic hero.

A Gold Banana

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