The Brave One

The Brave One

A veraciously virile vigilante flick à la Jodie Foster.

I’m not sure if this film is more like Jack the Ripper or Batman. Feels like Batman. I like the vigilante angle better. In the ‘real world’, Jodie Foster’s Erica Bain is the closest to Bruce Wayne an audience will ever get.

Jodie Foster is great, but who doesn’t know that already? Terrence Howard’s awesome too. He plays Detective Mercer like he plays everything else, but he is good at it. So, there’s that. Jodie Foster is like a superhero by herself. I bet in a past life she was a gladiator. I bet if aliens invade she’d fly an F-16 into the ufo’s laser vagina.

Really, I didn’t think I was going to like this movie. I was bored to death in Helena, and for some god damn reason Cinemark still doesn’t have Shoot ’em up. I didn’t think I was going to like this movie till about 45 minutes into it. I’ll also tell you what, I had no idea New York was so dangerous. Yeah, it’s no Helena, but I always kind of figured if you can handle yourself and you’re boobless no one’s going to slide a grenade down your pants. The Brave One showed me how wrong I am. I spent a couple weeks in New York earlier this summer, a couple of weeks where I often walked alone at night. It turns out it’s just dumb luck an esse, hoodrat, or hick didn’t bust my skull with the nearest available blunt object. I took a nap in central park! No one even tried to molest me. Should I feel lucky or insulted?

This movie really made me think about the classic mythos of a superhero. If you’re a fan of the Office, you may remember ‘Diversity Day’ where Mr. Brown asks what makes a hero. Dwight promptly replies “someone born out of a childhood drama…that must be avenged.” That’s common knowledge, I assume. Peter Parker does not become Spiderman till Uncle Ben is killed. The classic origin of a superhero does lie in some tragedy.

What The Brave One really got me thinking about is that. I realized tragedy is not only what creates a hero, but it is also what drives them. “With great power comes great responsibility” is bullshit. That has nothing to do with Spiderman fighting crime. He serves humanity out of guilt. Superman is lonely; Batman has vengeance; and the X-men are scared. They all do ‘the right thing’ because of these tragic emotions they can’t let go of.

It’s worth working out for yourself. Is Jodie Foster created or driven by tragedy, or both?

I should mention that I’ve been hearing this movie is a remake of a ’74 film called Death Wish.


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