Snapshots - #38: Only the Brave, Jane, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

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Only the Brave (2017), (♦♦♦♦): Based on the true story of the effort it took to get a municipal crew of firefighters from Prescott, Arizona, certified as Hotshots. After battling thousands of wildfires since their inception, the Granite Mountain Hotshots answered a call to battle the Yarnell Hill fire—about 30 miles away from Prescott—along with several other crews. How they got to that point and what happened is what this movie is about.
Only the Brave is a drama with some thriller on the side, and excellent performances to boast of. It's got a dynamic pace, engaging plot, amazing shots of wildfires, fun camaraderie, and great music to underscore the action. As an audience, we care for the journey of that crew, individually and as a group, and as heartbreaking as the closing scenes are, we stand in awe at the sacrifices that firefighters and their families make every day of their lives. Only the Brave is a darn great tribute to them, and elite firefighters such as the Granite Moun…

Gangster Squad (♦♦♦)

It’s 1949. The City of Los Angeles is under the reign of terror brought about by Mickey Cohen, a brutal gangster who thinks himself as “the future”. As many other gangsters, Mickey has bought out cops, politicians and judges, so he is virtually untouchable, or so he thinks, until the chief of police gives a former war vet now a detective with L.A. police the go ahead to form an independent force to weed out Mickey Cohen and his empire. Several misfit policemen join the task force which is informally called “gangster squad”, and they somewhat erase the line between good and evil in their efforts to bring Mickey Cohen to justice.

I thought this was an OK movie, but no more than that particularly because the story resembled way too much The Untouchables, which is movie legend by way of its cast, musical score, direction and everything you can think of that makes a movie great. Gangster Squad was not so. As I said, this film paled in comparison with the other one in more ways than one.

Don’t get me wrong, I liked the performances, I just wasn’t moved. Once again The Untouchables did it first and much better. Why repeat the recipe if you’re not going to improve it?

The cast is impressive though. Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Anthony Mackie, Michael Pena and Nick Nolte co-star.

In summary, instead of watching Gangster Squad go see The Untouchables and you’ll get better use of your time.

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