Plot – The story of a forbidden and secretive relationship between two cowboys, and their lives over the years – Brokeback Mountain.
Director – Ang Lee
Released – 2005
Given the rave reviews that Brokeback Mountain received upon release, I had great expectations for this movie, however; I have to admit that the film failed to live up to the hype, leaving me feeling bored for large portions of the film.
Of course, the cinematography was brilliant, which is what you would expect from an Ang Lee movie, while that acting was decent across the board, especially the supporting actors who helped bring this story of homosexuality and loneliness in 60s and 70s rural America to life.
The main problem I found with the film is how obvious it is that the film was adapted from a short story, with the first half of the film with two Bi-Sexual cowboys Ennis Del Mar (Ledger) and Jack Twist (Gyllenhaal) meeting and forming a connection while working on Brokeback Mountain is beautiful and well written, but the film falls down during the second half when trying to pad the story out by delving deeper into the lives of two characters lives after leaving Brokeback, introducing various family members and associates over the decades and introducing various complications to stop the two men ending up with their true love. For me, this just doesn’t work and loses the focus which should have been the one between Jack and Ennis.
The flawless direction of Lee and some delightful cameos keep the film engaging enough to keep watching, however, the film eventually remembers why people are watching the movie and in a rush to get back on track deteriorates into a well-choreographed equivalent of a Nicholas Sparks’ adaptation, complete with soppy dialogue rather than the understated and nuanced writing that succeeded so well at cementing these two men’s connection at the start of the film.
For all it does well, Brokeback Mountain contains just as much that didn’t quite work, but overall this is a beautiful, quiet film with some powerful performances and solid direction that proves that love transcends even the most hostile of environments.