‘Detachment’ – Movie Review

Detachment is a movie that centres on a substitute teacher who moves from class to class finally finding a connection with teachers and students in his latest school. Detachment stars Adrien Brody as the substitute teacher, Henry Barthes. Detachment reminds us all that indie films can still be absolutely astonishing. This isn’t the first movie that depicts the failings and horrors of the American education system but it is really one of the greatest I have seen. Detachment comes from director Tony Kaye the same filmmaker who bought us the phenomenally emotional movie centring on serious issues of race, American History X. When I first saw the trailer for this movie I was desperate to see it and now I finally have I can safely say it is worth every minute of your time.

The performances in this movie is where it really shines, Adrien Brody is absolutely breathtaking giving one of his finest and most powerful performances ever. You can really tell that he is putting his heart and sole into this role and it reiterates to us why he won an Oscar as this is another Oscar worthy performance on his behalf. Brody isn’t the only one that shines in this film, James Caan offers a occasionally comedic but in the end dark performance of a permanent teacher at what seems to be the worst school in America. But the number of big names in this films makes it feel more like a cameo-fest than a film filled with great actors.

The direction of this film is also beautiful, making the film look extremely stylish with flashback shots in a dark sepia toned picture showing us Henry’s puzzled past. Tony Kaye gives us all an extremely dark look into what school is really like these days and that leads to an intense roller coaster that many people aren’t ready to ride but trust me it is seriously worth it.

The relationship between Henry Barthes and the 15 year-old prostitute Eric whom he is trying to save from slipping further into the dark side of life is miraculous which becomes extremely rocky at times making for some of the films most dramatic moments.

Detachment is a very dark and powerful film that takes a lot out of you when watching it, I have so much love for this movie that I don’t know how to put into words but it really is the greatest film I have seen this year and you can expect to see it on my top movies of 2012 list at the end of the year. Detachment is a seriously thoughtful movie that will make you think about how important and delicate life really is.


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