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Parents' Guide to


By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Heartfelt but uneven, edgy tale of city teen in small town.

Movie R 2015 112 minutes
Bravetown Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 18+

Based on 1 parent review

age 18+

What is the actual name of the town

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (1 ):

Bravetown is one of those movies that audiences will expect to go one way, and then it goes another. On the surface, it seems like a mix of Footloose (talented city boy with an edgy rep arrives in a conservative small town) and the Step Up franchise/Glee (a group of underdog performers hopes to win a big competition). But there are also incredibly serious themes about war, post-war depression, parent-child reconnection, and grief that compete with the lighter story about the prodigy DJ who helps the sad-sack dance team develop into a serious competitor overnight. Not that the whole thing needed to be all light or all heavy (Footloose, of course, was both), but the back-and-forth occasionally gets frustrating.

What makes the movie work is definitely the performances. The actors are great with the material, and they humanize their characters, who are all dealing with sadness. The always excellent Laura Dern plays Mary's severely depressed mom, who's so in denial about her older son's death that she can barely get out of bed. Duhamel is believable as Josh's clever, laid back therapist with a secret of his own, and Till may look more like a North Dakotan than a New Yorker, but he manages to keep Josh real without being too smug or snobbish. By no means a perfect film, Bravetown nevertheless has heart, and debut director Daniel Duran shows promise in managing an ensemble drama.

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