Wednesday, November 1, 2017

[Review] Only the Brave


Based on the true story of an elite firefighting crew called the Granite Mountain Hotshots, Only the Brave is a high-stakes film that burns with intensity and emotion.

Josh Brolin, Miles Teller, James Badge Dale, and Taylor Kitsch play the rugged crew of firefighters who bust their butts to ward off treacherous flames in the hilly forests outside of Prescott, Arizona.

The film carries the same gritty, rah-rah spirit that you'd witness in a recent Peter Berg film (Lone Survivor, Deepwater Horizon). Director Joseph Kosinski makes sure to pull us into the heart of the dangers and dilemmas -- the obvious ones, as well as the ones we might not think about.

The special attention to character development here gives the action extra weight. Brolin's character is so full of pride and love for his crew and he's hellbent on saving lives, but deep down there's something about his profession that's eating away at him. Then there's Teller's well-played slacker, who joins the force to steer away from his drug addiction and to support the surprise newborn daughter in his life. A commanding Jeff Bridges even swoops in to deliver one of the film's best lines: "The only place you'll find sympathy here is in the dictionary...somewhere between 'shit' and 'syphilis'." Thankfully, there's a nice amount of humor in the script to balance out the heat.

Only the Brave is all about dirt, sweat, hard work, and camaraderie. It's a hard-hitting tale that is as inspiring as it is devastatingly tragic.

( 8/10 )


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