SUMMARY: In the early 1950s, young Irish woman Eilis (Saoirse Ronan) is sent off to New York City by her older sister. Initially finding it difficult to find her feet, reserved Eilis gradually blossoms in her job and meets a nice young man (Emory Cohen). But the call of her homeland suddenly grows louder for Eilis, leading her into relationship problems and challenges around where to settle down.
RATED: M for coarse language and brief sex scene.
AUDIENCE: Mainly one for the ladies, from late teens upwards. But blokes also might find more to latch onto with Brooklyn than expected.
WHAT’S GOOD: Saiorse Ronan is delightful as the naïve woman trying to work out how to live. Co-stars Emory Cohen and Domhnall Gleeson are gentlemanly, while Julie Walters and Jim Broadbent provide veteran charm. Despite a few swear words and an unnecessary sex scene, Brooklyn is a welcomed throwback to movies made more than 50 years ago.
WHAT’S NOT: It can be hard to work out what sort of story Brooklyn is telling. It’s not about immigration as much as you might imagine, as it delivers more of a gentle fairytale than a realistic depiction of moving countries. While it mainly focuses on Eilis’ life journey, the limited detail about her – along with the way she makes decisions – can be frustrating and put you at a distance.
SPIRITUALLY SPEAKING: Eilis gets herself into a bit of bother when it comes to matters of the heart. She tends to think moment to moment, and is easily led. Her story, then, should stir us to consider where we seek guidance in life. What are we living for? How should we care for others (and not just ourselves)? The characters played by Julie Walters and Jim Broadbent are refreshingly positive depictions of Christians on-screen. Their role in their community is encouraging yet it’s worth weighing up whether they also could have done more for Eilis’ maturity in life and faith.
RELEASE DATE: February 11 2016