Director Joseph Kosinski takes an interesting change of pace from stylish science fiction (following on from Tron: Legacy and Oblivion) and delivers an old school Hollywood dramatic action film with Only The Brave. The film comes with a brawny cast including Josh Brolin, Miles Teller, Jeff Bridges, James Badge Dale, and Taylor Kitsch.
Based on a GQ article, the film tells the story of violent wildfires in Arizona in 2013 which were tackled by the Granite Mountain Hotshots. It’s a well intentioned and wonderfully composed piece that manages to stay one-step ahead of the somewhat cliched material. That’s not a problem as cliche is often important on this type of film.
It’s the cast which is the thing here – and you can’t go wrong with the above the line-talent which Kosinski has assembled (Jennifer Connelly and Andie McDowell also fill-out supporting roles). Brolin is particularly strong and the lead delivering a grizzled machismo, but everyone else also gets their moment to shine.This is the type of thing you could see John Wayne making in the 1950s.
Only The Brave might not have set the box office alight (no pun intended) but it’s a strong piece of cinema which should find a following on its home release. Next up for Joseph Kosinski is Top Gun: Maverick, and this feels like a way for him limber-up and prepare for an intense male-driven actioner. Worth checking out.