Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Emory Cohen, Domhnall Gleeson
Director: John Crowley
Running Time: 112 mins
Brooklyn is an Irish film about a woman from a small countryside village who emigrates to Brooklyn, New York during the 1950s. However, when she finds her old home calling back for her, she becomes conflicted between the two countries.
Well, if you’re ever feeling down, and you want a film that’s both properly good and absolutely lovely, Brooklyn is the one to go for. With a wonderful romance story and a delightful central performance, there’s so much to smile about here, whilst there’s also still a lot of interesting drama to make this a thoroughly engaging watch.
The plot revolves around Eilis, a young woman from a small Irish village, who is sent out to Brooklyn by her sister in the hope of finding a better life, and despite the hope it promises, she starts off extremely homesick and confused in this new world.
However, this film manages to an expert job at blending the emotional drama of being homesick and leaving your own country forever with a hugely upbeat and positive atmosphere.
A lot of that positivity comes down to Saoirse Ronan’s fantastic performance as Eilis. She holds the dramatic side of the character very well, and shows off her conflicted feelings in some of the more emotional parts fantastically, but the most outstanding thing is how she makes Eilis such an infectiously adorable person.
The way she speaks, her mannerisms and the dialogue that she’s given by the writers all come together to make this central character someone that you really do like, and it’s impossible to discredit how valuable that is when it comes to making an engaging story.
This film isn’t the fastest-paced or most action-packed, nor is it the heaviest on emotional and romantic drama, it is generally a pretty by-the-numbers fluffy period romance. And normally, that’s the sort of stuff that you’d want to shy away from, but the acting and writing here come together to make such a captivating story about a woman finding herself and settling as an independent person in life. And achieving that, without being cheesy or preachy, is no mean feat.
There are points in this film that don’t quite pack the dramatic punch that you’d maybe like, and that could have yielded a potentially more compelling story, but there’s still no denying that the balance that this film strikes between drama and pleasant, easy-going viewing is pretty much perfect, and that’s why it gets a 7.6 from me.