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HARRY BROWN (WS)
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Top Customer Reviews
Its about old, retired people living in Britain and being subject to the nasty, vicious youth in the area, with no recourse. BUT, Harry Brown is an old warrior and does what he does best (a man after my own heart) and gets rid of the "creatures" that killed his friend 'just because they felt like it' with no mercy in their souls.
However, there is more to this film than just vigilante entertainment. The film offers a perverse view of the police force. It seems totally impotent or even criminally incompetent when it fails to protect Harry's friend or address the visceral gang problem in his neighbourhood. Yet, once they get a whiff of vigilantism on the part of Harry Brown, they suddenly seem to garner serious interest in their work to the point of almost police harassment. It seems easier to go after an old man rather than a vicious gang. Particularly disgusting is the attitude of the police woman is this film, her bleeding heart convictions totally clouding her judgment and role within the reality of this situation, in which she seems to show more emotional concern for vicious criminals rather than their victims, to the point where she leads her partner to being murdered on some misguided pursuit of justice.
Nevertheless, the film deserves credit for not showing Harry Brown as an avenging angel, but as a man who increasingly makes his soul ugly with his vigilantism. Particularly cruel was his treatment of a sexually abused teenage boy who was a member of the gang that killed his friend. It was obvious this boy was a member out of a sense of social survival, yet Brown's treatment of him was as immoral as anything the criminal gang would have done.Read more ›
Harry Brown (Michael Caine), a former Royal Marine who served in Belfast decides to turn vigilante when his best friend is murdered. Agism works in his favour because the police chief won't believe in a "vigilante pensioner", but one very astute female D.I suspects it's him. Like all Caine films this one has a subtle anti-establishment theme, but more strongly shows the violence that rules Britain as well as Canada, not just the USA. Guns, drugs, gangs and murder. It's kinda like The Wire meets Alfie (oops most of you are too young to remember Alfie is the movie that gave Caine his start). Still playing the working man, Caine finds his marine training is ingrained. He knows "the players" from watching out his window of the projects. As a pensioner I couldn't help but root for Harry Brown, the one man equalizer and chuckled at how agism worked in his favour.
The scene in the drug house where Brown goes to buy his piece is only too real. The seller passes thorugh his garden of grass to a filthy hole and offers Caine his stoned girlfriend for 50 quid, then ridicules him for not being "adequate". He shoots himself with heroine, then empties his gun and smokes crack -- it's very, very, real. Unfortunately for the dealer, Brown's gun isn't empty.
This film shows the seamy side of England seldom seen and looks a lot like junkie heaven as portrayed in Hollywood films. Can you imagine an aged 'Dirty Harry' (pun intended, sorry about that) w/ emphazima chasing a killer down the back streets of London? Michael Caine is phenomenal and the British supporting cast while all good actors pale in comparison. There are edge-of-your seat times and times of 'normal' British life with pub scenes (well normal for this generation -- it's not Miss Marple pub scenes). Well done Harry Brown!
Exactly what the trailer hinted at and I wasn't disappointed.
For those that like Mr. Caine as less of a 'nice guy' than he's often been portrayed in film over the year, this one's for you. Not quite as nasty a character as "Get Carter", Harry Brown nonetheless is a 'take no crap' kind of fellow, once he gets the proper motivation.
A very enjoyable flick.