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Only the Brave - A Ms. H Movie Review

Written by RealMsH

Disclaimer:  The views expressed here are mine alone and do not represent those of


Just as I have, I’m sure you’ve heard the Marines’ mantra -- The Few, The Proud, The Brave.  Well, without checking out the movie trailer or reading about the movie prior to going to see it -- I was under the impression this movie was going to be military or war related.  However, after watching the first few minutes of Only the Brave, it was obvious this movie was going to be another type of heroic story.  Was I satisfied or disappointed that Only the Brave was a complete turn-around from what I expected?  Check out my movie review to find out.

only the brave Josh Brolin

Presentation of Main Characters in Only the Brave

To fully understand a movie, I think it is helpful to know which character the story is centered around.  The Only the Brave movie, in my opinion, attempted to cover as many characters’ stories as possible; however, in the final analysis, the main characters were the unlikely recruit to the team, played by Miles Teller and the chief or head of the team played by Josh Brolin. Jennifer Connelly as Josh Brolin's character wife was also  prominent in the movie.  In my opinion, the addition of the unlikely recruit to the team was realistically demonstrated which included dealing with the aspect of him initially being viewed as an outcast to later being a welcomed member of the team.

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Story Line of Only the Brave

Only the Brave is a docudrama so the events are based on a true story.  It was told in such a way that you may feel a connection with the characters, including their happy as well as sad times.  The story line sufficiently demonstrated how the team was triumphant in being named the first local firefighters called Hot Shots -- a goal they had been trying to reach for quite some time.


Photo Ops in Only the Brave

There is a scene in Only the Brave  where the firefighters took a picture together in front of a tree, pyramid style.  I was not familiar with this picture but ascertained that it was based on an actual photo -- which it was.  Kudos to the directors and actors for doing an excellent job of capturing the look of the men as they posed together for the photo.  There were minor changes in the movie photo as opposed to the original.  For example, one of the men who was looking down in the actual photo, is shown looking up in the movie version of the picture -- which I had no problem with.

 Only The Brave Miles Teller Josh Brolin 1200x520

Acting Ability of the Characters

As a way of honoring the brave men of this group, I think actor Miles Teller who played the role of the unlikely recruit toned down his acting when it came to his having a drug problem to the point where the chief labeled him an addict.  That being said, I believe this was done to direct the attention of the movie audience away from these details to the larger focus of the mission of the firefighters, which was to fight dangerous, sometimes unpredictable wildfires. The acting abilities of the characters were  adequate, even though I think Jennifer Connelly could  have shown her devastation of what happened to her husband more dramatically -- instead of simply comforting the survivor of the wildfire disaster.

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Assessment of Only the Brave

I think Only the Brave achieved what it set out to do, which was to tell the stories of these brave firefighters. However, the movie fell short on the emotional impact of what happened to the firefighters during the wildfire fight. Spoiler Alert:  During the final scenes in the movie when everyone was gathered in the gym waiting to find out the fate of the firefighters, a few people seemed truly affected by the dire circumstances, but this scene lacked the emotional reach I expected to see, especially from Jennifer Connelly.  To answer the question posed earlier, I was satisfied with the heroic story as told in Only the Brave, even though the acting skills of some of the main characters were not quite up to par.

 Rating of Only the Brave

Based on a rating of 1 to 5 stars, with 5 stars being the highest, I rate Only the Brave 4 stars.

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