U.S., 2005, 109 min, 35mm, Dir. Rian Johnson, Rated R, Focus Features


Saturday, 5/5

"Rian Johnson’s endlessly clever debut feature…is a flavorful incorporation of adolescent angst into detective fiction." – Scott Tobias, The AV Club

Brendan Frye (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) answers a pay phone in the middle of the night and hears a cryptic message from his ex-girlfriend Emily Kostich (Emilie de Ravin), gleaming the words “brick,” “pin” and “tug.” Like any good hardboiled detective, Brendan sets out to rescue his old flame except there’s one major difference between him and Humphrey Bogart-types: Brendan’s still in high school. In his directorial debut, Rian Johnson (now famous for Looper and Stars Wars: The Last Jedi) mixes high school drama, adolescent angst, 1940s film noir, and a heavy dose of Dashiell Hammett into a concoction that put the then-indie director on the map. Levitt, hot on the heels of his affecting performance in Gregg Araki’s Mysterious Skin, is transfixing as puts the pieces together and slings the unique slang of the world. As Scott Tobias of The AV Club notes, “Shot in 35mm for under $500,000, Brick has a homemade obsessiveness that recalls Primer, another resourceful and densely plotted mindbender that outsmarted its more generously bankrolled Sundance cousins.”

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