Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Brothers' Blooms : A Review

Up to this juncture, I've heard nothing but good praise for this movie. I saw the trailer a few times but I thought it looked maybe too cheesy and comedic for my taste. Really. Using a mute Japanese Harajuku Girl as a prop for all the randomness? Hmmm... let me consider that idea. But... I'm a fan of Mark Ruffalo (really, that guy don't get enough credit) and Adrian Brody have yet to dissappoint me with any of his movies (well.. maybe The Darjeeling Ltd was a bit too random for me). And... yes... I've heard nothing but good things about this movie, and I am nothing but a sucker for a good movie.

This movie is basically a con-movie. Think... Ocean Eleven (and Twelve... and Thirteen)... minus George Clooney (and the other 10, 11 or 12). The Brothers Bloom are perhaps the best con-artists in the world, renowned for their elaborate and dramatic ploys in order to syphoon money off innocent rich tycoons. And their latest 'Mark': Penelope Stamp - an epileptic pinhole photographer, well-known for her huge amount of inheritance, as well as collection of hobbies.

Of course, this would NOT be your basic straight-off-the-mill con job. We're talking about the Brothers Blooms here, and Stephen (Mark Ruffalo) is nothing but a good, dramatic narrator. And from the moment they made contact with Penelope, you know things aren't ever as they seemed, and you are dragged into this flurry of web, tangles and lies, and into the twisted and warped made-up world created by Stephen, and acted-out with sublime perfection by his brother Bloom (Adrian Brody), and... random Japanese chick, BoomBoom (Rinko Kikuchi).

It's a con in a con in a con being conned. Up to a point, you can't even trust your own instinct on what is real and what is not. Which, I think, lies the beauty of this movie. Being such an elaborate narrative, it's easy to mess it up and make the storyline very confusing for the audience. But what this movie did was... well, hell yeah you're confused! but you get the heart of the idea... the executions... the relationship between the brothers, as well as the blossoming romance... so basically, that confusion is anchored to something.

And other than the storyline itself (of a con in a con in a con being conned) , the movie is nicely packaged with a neat red ribbon. It's funny. Yet subtle. It's dramatic. Without being corny. It's an adventure... that is well executed by all players. And the characters are all lovable. Even the random Japanese chick grows on you.

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