Saoirse Ronan is a young Irish girl, who immigrates to America specifically Brooklyn to find a new life for herself. Shortly afterwards she finds herself in a romance with a neighbouring Italian man, but when her past pulls her back into Ireland she faces a tough decision between which of her two lives she wants to pursue.
Brooklyn was obviously a very difficult film to advertise, because other than the stellar cast it doesn’t have many big “selling points”. It’s difficult to make an advert for a film that’s so downplayed and nuanced. There are no big romantic gestures, there are no awards grabbing monologues, it’s a film about the small things. But don’t let this put you off, because after the film has won you over (this should take all of 10 minutes) these small things will appear to be much larger than they really are.
It’s a refreshingly “old-fashioned” drama. In the sense that it’s a film about characters first, and events second. It’s got this lovely gentle pacing, you barely notice as the minutes pass, you are so involved with the characters. I do definitely think that it deserves more awards and notice, but I don’t think it is shouty enough which is a shame.
The performances here are all note perfect. Saoirse Ronan has never been better, and with her back catalogue that is really saying something. Elsewhere Emory Cohen, Domhall Gleeson and Julie Walters are particularly good. If I do have a niggle, it’s that it’ll be difficult for me to sell this to friends because of how much it’s a film based around subtlety.