Review: The Brothers Bloom

The Brothers Bloom | Rian Johnson, 2009

Last year, I finally decided to watch Brick, Rian Johnson’s directorial debut. I had heard about how great it was, but never thought about giving it a chance. Well, when I did, I loved it. So, because of this, I eagerly anticipated his follow up: a film about con men. However, due to Summit’s crappy release patter, I was just able to watch it, and although it is not as good as Brick, it is pretty good.

The Brothers Bloom follows two brothers Bloom (Adrien Brody) and —–(Mark Ruffalo). They, along with their explosions expert, Bang Bang (Rinko Kikuchi), live the life fantastique, but Bloom is not happy and wants a normal life so he quits, but soon after his brother finds him so that they can do one last con. This con involves Penelope, a rich shut-in that wants adventure. And so, they travel around the world to give her adventure and hope they can con some money out of her.

Like I said, this is not as good as Johnson’s previous directorial effort, mostly because of the script. The plot is very thin and it barely holds the movie together. Near the end it drags, but the ending does save it. As a director, Johnson does a good job at channeling his inner Wes Anderson. The best thing about the movie, though are the performances.

Rachel Weiz as Penelope gives the best performance of the bunch. She just seemed to be having a lot of fun and was totally into the character. Plus, her performance makes for the funniest moment of the year. Her performance is one of the best of the year. Brody, Ruffalo, and Kikuchi are good for what they have to do, but they didn’t seem to be into their characters as much as Weiz.

The Brothers Bloom is fun movie. It is not quite as brilliant as Brick, but it did show that Johnson can work with a bigger budget well and that he can get good performances out of his actors. Hopefully his next movie is better.

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