Brooklyn: One Heart, Two Lives, Two Loves, Two Countries, One Choice

Sean Smith, Reporter

I recently saw the movie Brooklyn, starring Academy Award nominee, Saoirse (pronounced SIR-sha) Ronan whose performance was purely outstanding throughout the whole film. Ronan plays Eilis (pronounced AY-lish) Lacey, a young Irish woman who immigrated to Brooklyn, New York in the 1950’s. There she stays with a Irish-American house mother and three other Irish girl immigrants just like her and one rude American girl. Eilis gets a job as a sales woman at a department store. While in America, Eilis and her sister Rose write letters back and forth. After a few weeks she gets homesick and wants to leave Brooklyn. So instead she starts taking night classes at Brooklyn College and works during the day. Eilis and her friends go to a dance where she meets an Italian-American boy, Tony who she begins to fall in love with. After a few months of having a good relationship with Tony Fiorello (Emory Cohen) something tragic happens back in Ireland which forces Eilis to go back home for a month or so to comfort her hurting mother. This worries Tony he thinks she will not come back to him. She tells him she loves him and they begin to write to each other. Eilis is supposed to stay in Ireland until the third week of August, but her childhood friend is getting married and she stays for an extra week. Over the month she starts to spend most of her time with Jimmy Farrell (Domhnall Gleeson), a young Irishman who is seeking someone to marry. Eilis is now conflicted. She loves Tony, but she now likes Jimmy? Who will Eilis choose,Tony in America who is a plumber and has a family with a lot of land and money on Long Island? Or Jimmy whose parents are leaving his childhood home to him and wanting to fulfill his old home with a new wife? Eilis realizes the pros and cons of choosing America and Tony and Jimmy in Ireland.

I highly recommend this film. As someone whose ancestors came from Ireland and moved to New York in the mid 1900’s I felt this movie is sentimental to me and my ancestry. I could imagine what it was like moving to America from Ireland like what Eilis did and what my great- grandfather did with his family. If they didn’t do what they did I wouldn’t probably be living in America today, if you think about it.

Brooklyn was Oscar nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Actress in a Leading Role, and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published. Also, Saoirse Ronan was nominated for a Golden GLobe for Best Performance by an actress in a Motion Picture – Drama. Sadly, Ronan lost to Jennifer Lawrence for her portrayal of Joy Mangano in the film, Joy. The Golden Globes aired on January 10, 2016. Ronan was Oscar and Globe nominated for her performance in Atonement in 2008, Ronan was only 12 when she was in that film. I admit that I am rooting for Ronan to take home the Oscar for Brooklyn this year, though her competition sure is fierce. This year Jennifer Lawrence, Joy, Brie Larson, Room, Charlotte Rampling, 45 years and Cate Blanchett, Carol are the fellow nominees. Lawrence won an Oscar in 2013 for her role in Silver Linings Playbook and this is her fourth nomination. This is Brie Larson’s first Oscar nomination. This is Charlotte Rampling’s first Oscar nomination at 69 years old. Blanchett took home two Oscars; one for her role in Aviator in 2005 and 2014 for her role in Blue Jasmine and this year is her seventh nomination. Ronan, 21 deserves this Oscar tremendously. We will have to wait to see who will take home Oscars for all the great films in 2015. The 88th annual Academy Awards will air on February 28, 2016 and Chris Rock is to host.

Saoirse Ronan was born in the Bronx, New York and when she was only three years old she moved with her parents, Monica and Paul Ronan, who are both experienced actors, to Ireland where her parents were born. Ronan was the perfect choice for this role since she was born in New York, but was raised in Ireland. Ronan was first noticed for her role in Atonement, 2007 where she was one of the youngest actresses for an Oscar. Throughout the years Ronan’s success has multiplied and current has a net worth of $2.5 million.

Brooklyn is a simple film about a girl who has one heart, two loves, two lives, two different countries and can only choose one.