Being one of the biggest hits to come out of this year’s Sundance, this is a movie about embracing an alternative culture while having the native one on the side. This is what Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan, in an award-worthy performance) faces as she arrives in Brooklyn. She gets a new job at a department store, takes bookkeeping classes at a local college-set up by Father Flood (Jim Broadbent), and lives in an Irish boarding house, run by Madge Kehow (Julie Walters). Eilis begins feeling homesick until she falls in love with Tony Fiorello (Emory Cohen), an Italian-American plumber. With another life at home, she must choose between America or Ireland.
Based on Colm Tóibín’s book of the same name, Brooklyn sounds like a movie that would go into soap-opera territory. But through Nick Hornby’s miraculous screenplay and John Crowley’s brilliant direction, the movie doesn’t come close to it. Instead, they bring the 1950s to pure life with enough wit, charm, beauty, and raw emotion. It pays homage to Crowley’s native Ireland as well as the movies of that time. The cinematography reminds me so much of Her. The vibrant colors set the tone so wonderfully that every shot looks like a moving painting. Brooklyn is one of the 2015’s absolute best.