BROOKLYN is a beautiful and moving story of Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan), a young Irish immigrant navigating her way through 1950s Brooklyn. Lured by the promise of America, Eilis departs Ireland and the comfort of her mother’s home for the shores of New York City. The initial shackles of homesickness quickly diminish as a fresh, romantic sweep Eilis into the intoxicating charm of love. But soon, her new vivacity is disrupted by her past, and she must choose between the two countries and the lives that exist within.
A movie worth seeing, just to talk about after words. It is a beautiful film unto itself, the visuals, the editing, the acting, and the music. John Crowley directs the screenplay Nick Hornby, and produced by Finola Dwyer, Amanda Posey. Featuring an outstanding cast; Saoirse Ronan, Domhnall Gleeson, Emory Cohen, with Jim Broadbent and Julie Walters. An excellent date movie.
The plot from wikipedia. It contains spoilers.
Young Irish immigrant Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan) navigates her way through 1950s Brooklyn. Lured by the promise of the USA, Eilis departs Ireland and the comfort of her mother’s (Jane Brennan) home for the shores of New York City. The initial shackles of homesickness quickly diminish as a fresh romance sweeps Eilis into the intoxicating charm of love. But soon, her new vivacity is disrupted by her past, and Eilis must choose between two countries and the lives that exist within.
Eilis is working in a small town in Ireland at a shop run by a petty and vindictive woman. Her sister has arranged for her to go to the USA to find a real future. She departs but has an initially awful crossing, as she is given food poisoning by the ships’ food and locked out of the toilet by her cabin neighbours. But the woman in the bunk below her, an experienced traveller, is eventually her saviour. She gives her advice and support for entering the country and beginning life in Brooklyn.
Eilis has been found accommodation at an Irish boarding house in Brooklyn where she dines each night with the traditionalist landlady and her fellow female residents. She also has a job at a department store but initially struggles with small talk and customer service. Her letters to her older sister, Rose, back in Ireland chronicle her initial homesickness. But at a dance she meets Tony, from an Italian family, who is quickly besotted with her. She is ambivalent at first but ultimately confesses her love for him.
Now Eilis is feeling at home, the job is going well and she is excelling in evening classes to become a book-keeper. Back in Ireland however, Rose dies. It seems she has been ill for some time but has kept it a secret.
Eilis’s mother makes a trans-Atlantic phone call which forces Eilis to return to Ireland to visit. Tony insists that if she is leaving they must get secretly married first.
Back in Ireland, everybody (but mostly her mother) seems to be conspiring to keep Eilis. Her best friend is getting married a week after her booked return journey, and her mother has already accepted the invitation on her behalf. She is set up on dates with eligible bachelor Jim, who is about to come into serious property and she replaces her sister in an urgently needed bookkeeping role. Eilis starts to feel that she now has the future in Ireland that did not exist when she left and stops opening letters from Tony.
But an encounter with her former employer, the bitter shopkeeper, who has heard gossip of the marriage and intends to use it for blackmail or similar, reminds Eilis of the small town mentality she has come to hate. Emotionally she informs her mother of the marriage. Her mother is accepting but at a distance. Eilis sets off for America and Tony the next day. Now she is the experienced traveller offering words of wisdom to a first-timer.