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Little more than your average ‘inspirational' biopic about a man with a disability this is only slightly better than The Theory of Everything (2014) and I Am Sam (2001). It's hard not to feel emotionally manipulated while watching events play out in a fashion that is meant to jerk tears out of you. Unfortunately director Jim Sheridan directs all of this gracelessly so that we are not successfully manipulated and instead recognize the clumsy attempts, only angering us further. In 1989 classics like When Harry Met Sally… (1989), Do the Right Thing (1989) and Sex, Lies and Videotape (1989) were released and yet this clichéd, trite little movie earned a Best Picture nomination.
Christy Brown, Daniel Day-Lewis, is born with cerebral palsy into a poor family of 15. His supportive mother Bridget, Brenda Fricker, struggles to raise him as his alcoholic, abusive father Patrick, Ray McAnally, spends his earnings on liquor and she miscarries a child. As he grows into adolescence he discovers that he can use his left foot to communicate and displays unusual intelligence. This pushes him to paint and he quickly discovers that he can produce work of a high quality. His life is changed by Dr. Eileen Cole, Fiona Shaw, who trains him to speak and encourages his painting ability but their relationship ends when he falls in love with her and discovers she is engaged to another man precipitating a breakdown at a restaurant. He recovers and writes a memoir recounting his experiences that brings him money and international fame but his family continue to suffer hardships.
Daniel Day-Lewis delivered an acclaimed turn in this film as the main character with his commitment to the tics and mannerisms of a real person but thirty years later his performance seems less impressive than it would have been at the time. You can't help seeing the ‘acting' in the performance as he was so over the top that I was never convinced I was watching a character going about his day but instead felt that I was seeing an actor trying very hard to put in a good performance. The other performers in the film fare much better as Fricker gives a pleasant, naturalistic performance as the saintly mother figure who so often appears in this sort of film. She does a good job at playing sympathetic and loving with a hidden steeliness but she hardly succeeds Anjelica Huston in Enemies, A Love Story (1989) and Dianne Wiest in Parenthood (1989).
The plot developments in the film are also terribly predictable as the film never deviates from the traditional biopic formula and the eureka moments and tragedies don't hit quite as hard as they would have did they not feel so milquetoast. The screenplay by Shane Connaughton and Jim Sheridan rolls through setting up the various problems that our saintly matriarch faces without a second thought as we never get any specificity on these issues and are meant to generally understand the horrors of her life. While I can imagine that it would be terribly difficult to raise a child with cerebral palsy this film did not illustrate that idea in a way that felt new or interesting. Adding to the tedium was the storytelling device of having Brown and his future wife, a kindly nurse, interact in the present while cutting back to his childhood in extended flashbacks. If I wanted a traditional biopic I could watch Coal Miner's Daughter (1980) or Silkwood (1983) both of which boast incredible lead performances that have not aged a day.
For those who love films in the vein of The Imitation Game (2014) this will satiate their hunger for a dull, paint by numbers story with a dubious connection to real events but I didn't think this film did nearly enough with what could have been an interesting story. 1989 was such a deep year of film and it's disappointing that so many rotten films, Field of Dreams (1989), Driving Miss Daisy (1989), Dead Poets Society (1989) and this one, made it into major categories. Day-Lewis would go on to do bigger and better things as would most of the cast and I am glad that he was able to leave behind this regrettable performance.
My Left Foot is a standard Oscar-bait biopic which is typical in its narrative and structure, and fairly predictable throughout. It's manipulative, but also definitely quite inspirational in its story. Daniel Day-Lewis and Brenda Fricker both delivered very strong performances and their characters are the highlights, and their relationship is the best reason to see this movie along with its inspirational nature.
Just watch Daniel day Lewis at his very best
a writhing response to an imperishable question..
My Left Foot: The Story Of Chris Brown
There are very few features that are known for its stand-out performance that has touched thousands of heart and this is one of them. The writing is compelling; even though of familiar structure that follows up the same rudimentary process that a usual biography does, but is still adaptive and exhilarating, especially when created a dramatic sequences that is not only poetic but rhymes too, to the tone of it which shows the passion and enthusiasm of the makers on telling the story. It may be short on technical aspects like sound department and editing, but surprisingly it barely factors in, as the audience finds itself in the awe of the performance, for the most of the time. Jim Sheridan; the screenwriter and director, is in his A game and brings out the best possible outcome in each and every frame of it. As mentioned earlier, there is no flinching on the excellence and hard work of Daniel Day Lewis's acting skills and his love towards the craft of it. My Left Foot: The Story Of Chris Brown is a writhing response to an imperishable question, not asked by the strangers residing in the society but the loved ones who too are any human than us.
My Left Foot: The Story of Christy Brown is a 1989 biographical drama film co-written and directed by Jim Sheridan.
AAN GGWF 1001
An inspirational and empathetic story led by a fiercely committed and career-defining performance by Daniel Day-Lewis.
Ok daneil day Lewis movie.
A simple and sometimes touching story of hope, with an outstanding performance from Daniel Day-Lewis.
worth it purely for Lewis' fantastic performance, one of many along with There Will be Blood, Phantom Thread
My left foot is truly an amazing movie. The performances are all good especially from Daniel Day-Lewis. I am not surprised that he won an oscar for this role. This film tells he true story of a man with a illness that limits him to only have use for his left leg. This person was amazing with what he was able to do and overcome and Daniel Day-Lewis portrayed it brilliantly. this movie is slow but I never got board and I thought the run time was just right. the only times the film got a little more slow for me was when the would cut back to what was happening in the present. But that is a minor problem. My left foot is a great film.