Only the Brave (2017)

Second to 9/11, the Yarnell Hill fires took the lives of the most firefighters at once. And to think I repeatedly gravitated towards this film then rejected it! I wrongly– but understandably– assumed it would either be a scrappy little high-fiver or a tribute to testosterone. Was I wrong! Not that Twister isn’t inspiring…

I was relieved for the sake of honoring the sacrifice of the men depicted that this wasn’t yet another ham-fisted glob of cliches shoved at the screen. The essential elements are there, i.e. it’s scripted, but each actor morphs into their character, not only because the casting is on point but the dialogue rings true.

Normally, I would reference a “slow burn” with a cringe at the unintended pun but the pacing was a feat in itself. There are few movies of this caliber; it’s exactly the length it needs to be– neither rushed nor lingering. Precision was essential for a number reasons.

But if I don’t stop gushing now, I never will. Go watch it.

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