Saturday, April 1, 2006

Brokeback Mountain

In a Nutshell: Good movie, excellent performances, but didn't live up to the hype.

Quick Plot: (If you don't know by now, then you have been living under some huge whopping rock for way too long.) Two cowboys begin a forbidden and secret romance that spans several decades.

In Detail: Wow, what to say about this movie. I don't really know. Lots of folks have seen it already, lots of others won't see it for any reason, and still others have lots of questions. If you have some specific questions you would like to ask me about it, email me and I'll get back to you. For me, I'll just review it like I would any other film.

It was very good, but not great. It is one of those films (and I have seen several) where the performances were excellent, but the movie as a whole didn't live up to those performances. My hat is off to Heath Ledger; he was simply amazing. So restrained, so understated, and yet you could just feel his pain and torment flowing from the screen. Jake Gyllenhaal was good, but Ledger was better. It doesn't help that there is something about Gyllenhaal's character that I really didn't like, though I can't really put my finger on it. The movie is very slow, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Most emotional dramas are. But ultimately, I was disappointed. No, disappointed isn't quite right; unsatisfied is probably better. For that kind of build-up and that amount of time and emotional investment in the long and drawn out drama (again, not a necessarily a bad thing), there just wasn't enough pay-off. I should have cried. I should have been bawling. Instead, I barely got misty. I'm all for subtle, but to me, there should have been more. More how or more of what, I'm not sure. It was just missing something. Good, worth seeing if you're interested, but not the great cinematic masterpiece I was expecting.

Will I Buy It? Unlikely. I wouldn't watch it often enough to make it worthwhile.