The critical reception for John Crowley's film Brooklyn has been overwhelmingly positive, auguring well for Oscar nominations. However, while The New Yorker's critic, Richard Brody praised Saoirse Ronan's performance, he roundly criticised the movie itself.
The New Yorker magazine's review carries the headline,'The Sanitized Past of Brooklyn.' The film opened in New York on Wednesday.
"Brooklyn contains just enough narrative information to fill a short film and delivers it very deliberately, as if doing so would dispel the risk of any ambiguity and make its lack of substance seem very important, " writes Brody.
He refers to "a sparse and simplistic framework . . . a framework with a blandly pretty, boutique-y palette of images" and "performances of a typecast and type-confined simplicity—with one exception, that of the lead performance, by Saoirse Ronan, who works hard to invest the movie with depth of feeling."
Brody goes on to pretty much skewer Brooklyn outright, writing of "the nearly ridiculously blanked-out botch of a movie that results," which, the critic argues, makes it all the more disappointing.
The critic also writes: "the movie targets viewers who want to be kidded into believing in their own sophistication by the sheer privilege of having been born later, flattered into belief in their own progressiveness because of their greater fund of knowledge, because of their awareness - or, rather, belief, as reinforced in a movie such as Brooklyn - in the mentally impoverished naïveté of the modern past."
Read TEN's review of Brooklyn here.
Click on the video links to watch Alan Corr's interviews with Saoirse Ronan and John Crowley.