Ali, Amber, and I went to The Cinema Theatre (957 South Clinton Ave.) to see Star Trek. As you might expect, it's a decent movie and an innovative way to kick-start the franchise once again. Ali and I enjoyed it and I think Amber did too although she had some complaints. Anyway, they left and I stayed for the second feature: a movie I'd heard nothing about called The Brothers Bloom.
Apparently it came-and-went from The Little (240 East Ave.) and possibly corporate screens as well, all with little fanfare. Reviews have been lukewarm at best. My mood was to give it a try at the beginning, and my alternative was to meet Ali out at Lux Lounge (666 South Ave.): a not unattractive option.
Well, I figured I'd hang through the "early days" introduction: two brothers, Stephen and Bloom, had been in-and-out of foster families for quite some time when they stumbled into the notion of playing cons. I didn't know if I was in for a kids movie but I figured I'd linger to the credits. Once the relationship was established, the film heads for 25 years in the future when the brothers are adults, and still con-men.
Ok, so it's hooked me for 10 minutes.
Bloom doesn't want to stick with the game after their last job, but his brother ropes him in it for one more: woo a naive heiress — Penelope — living alone in her parents' estate. She's a handful, though, as she has a surprisingly fierce appetite for adventure (especially considering her apparently self-imposed exile) and she's extremely smart in a myriad of practical and philosophical fields.
Anyway, the movie runs along in a whimsical fairy-tale style. The simple surface conceals a more interesting philosophical bent: is it valuable to plan ahead? As such, the story — largely led by the plan crafted by Stephen — leads Bloom and Penelope on what should be a romantic and bond-forming adventure. But it's only in the fringe deviations from said plan that those things actually occur. I've found it's pretty much the same in life: it's no the planned trip to Chimney Bluffs State Park (7700 Garner Rd., Wolcott) that I remember as much as it is when Lucy ran her hysterical orbits through the muddy waters along the trail. It's the unplanned moments that make things worthwhile.
So … why plan?
And I think that's what The Brothers Bloom is getting at. To speak in music reviewer parlance, it's sort of Hudson Hawk meets Adaptation. meets The Adventures of Baron Munchausen: the lighthearted comedy and uneven production of the first, with the film-as-life-as-film metaphor of the second, and the attention to detail and understanding of fantasy of the third. It's not the best movie ever, but definitely worth a visit … hang in there the few times it really lags, and just have a good time with it.
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