Only The Brave


It’s time to look at a film based on a true story. As with any film in this style you will probably get the maximum effect if you don’t know about the event it’s based on. I’m not familiar with it myself so I get to be along for the ride as we get twists and turns. I assume it should be pretty accurate to what happened, maybe just some extra drama at most. It’s definitely a complete story either way.

The movie starts by introducing us to Eric who has been trying for years to get his group certified. Right now they can advise the fire fighters on how to handle a fire but they have no actual power and just get ignored all the time. Well, they finally have a chance to do this but they will have to handle the fires really well and impress the top brass. Eric is going to have to do this with a team that has quite a lot of new members on board as well. Hope these guys are ready because it’s time for the Hot Shots to do their thing.

In part the film can also work as an educational one since the movie discusses the different type of fire fighters. The Hot Shots for example are the guys who are allowed to fight fire with fire and actually get on the ground to do the job. You’ve got the planners who stay from afar and do directing as well as many other functions. Considering that these kind of wild fires are so dangerous and move with tremendous speed, it’s easy to see why there has to be so many rules and protocols here.

Even now people will die if they’re not prepared for a fire. Nature is one of those things that never fully gets conquered. Eric’s main challenge to get through is that he is currently having a lot of arguments with his wife. Originally when they married they agreed that they wouldn’t have kids and she didn’t mind being home alone while he would be out all day. Amanda has since changed her mind though and wants kids now but Eric doesn’t want to sacrifice his firefighting career.

There’s a lot of drama here to be sure. Eric doesn’t handle it very well at times to be sure. He tries to avoid the issue most of the time. Still, I do think he’s right when he says that they had an agreement. They both decided not to have any kids so it’s a bit late to be changing your mind on such a huge topic. It’s one of those things you always want to discuss before marriage for this precise reason and why you shouldn’t do so in the hopes that you’ll change the other person’s mind eventually. It just gets risky without a doubt and there’s constant tension in this plot between the two characters.

Then you have Brendan who is the other main character. He’s had a very checkered past involving a lot of drugs and affairs. He finds out that one girl he would hang out with named Natalie is pregnant and about to have a kid. Now he has to try to finally be responsible and help her out but she isn’t particularly interested in being with him. Brendan’s family is also ashamed and have kicked him out. Being a Hot Shot member is all that’s left to him now but perhaps it will be the stability he needs.

Brendan is doing his best to turn over a new leaf and that’s the bulk of his plot. He doesn’t have nearly the same kind of preparation and years of training that the others have but he has determination and a drive to succeed. He is trying his best the whole time so you can certainly root for him. Natalie also did well to survive on her own for so long and she gives Brendan a second chance. This subplot definitely appears as a much more positive note than the first one.

There are other members of the Hot Shot crew but the focus is certainly on the main two. The rest seem like reasonable members. Of course you have the one guy who’s a jerk to Brendan at first but he eventually mellows out and never gets too petty about it. Not everyone on the crew is necessarily a nice guy and a lot of threats are thrown around but they usually come through when it counts.

The visuals for the fire are definitely intense. Some of this would work rather well in an end of the world kind of film. The soundtrack is also good. There’s one theme in particular that even sounds like it could have come out of Tron. It’s got a bit of an electronic vibe to it which is nice to see.

For the most part, Only The Brave is a pretty light hearted film. It tends to touch on a lot of serious themes and gets grim at times but by and large I would call it light hearted. As for the ending, well if you know how the story ends then you’ll know if it’s happy or sad. It’s certainly not a cliffhanger type ending so no sequel here.

Overall, Only the Brave is a drama film with quite a lot of fire going on. It can be happy at times and it can be sad at others. Films based on true events certainly vary a lot depending on what the story is. You’ll know right away if it’s your kind of film or not. The characters tend to make a lot of mistakes here and go at each other but you don’t really know if this is for extra drama or presumably we knew this about them. Knowing that the film is based on a true story always adds another layer to the experience. It’s a lot to take in but you should know more about how to deal with fires by the end of watching this. So if this sounds like a story you want to watch then check it out and if not, then you can always read a news article about it instead.

2 thoughts on “Only The Brave

  1. Good review! I recently viewed the movie and thought the scenes were realistic, particularly dealing with the impact and ferocity of the actual fires. I thought the acting was quite good, too. I give this a thumbs up.

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