The Brave is actor Johnny Depp's debut film as a director and while the film is flawed in many ways it must be said that it is a pretty decent attempt, Depp who became a household name in the late 80's and early 90's directs and stars in a tale about a Native American man who is willing to go to very extreme lengths to provide for his family. Based on a novel that has a similar story Depp's first attempt at directing isn't a bad one but it is clear that there is significant room for improvement as the film goes on for far too long and it is also a bit slow to start however the second half of the film is extremely powerful and the ever consistent Depp is magnificent in the starring role.
Raphael is a native American man who lives in a slum-junkyard neighborhood with his wife and two children and he makes a little money be selling scrap items that he finds in the rubbish. When Raphael is offered a substantial amount of money to appear in a snuff film that would leave his family with a modest home and enough spare cash to get by for a while he agrees to do it and he is then given a week to live before appearing in the film. Raphael decides that he will spend a small portion of his cash on gifts for his wife and kids so he can have one last week of peace and joy with the family he loves.
The Brave is by no means a masterpiece in fact it is far off it as the film's narrative is pretty weak between the first and final sequences and it definitely runs far too long for it's own good but Depp plays the character of Raphael with such passion and heart and he clearly shows that there are a lot of things he would do for family by making a film of this like and he is as good as usual in this one. That the film was so widely panned by critics at the Cannes Festival will remain a mystery to me because while it has it's faults there are much worse films out there.