Brain on Fire (2016)

As you will notice, Brain on Fire came out four years ago. That’s how long that movie was on my watchlist. I knew nothing about the subject matter, and I was only interested in watching Chloe Grace Moretz act.

What amazed me was the story of Susannah Cahalan. This girl had it all. Her dream job working for the New York Times and a talented musician boyfriend who was madly in love with her. Slowly her life crumbled, and she was forced to live for a long period in the hospital with no proper diagnosis. To be honest, it all seemed really tragic. 

At first glance, you will think this was some random story. In fact, this is a real story. When the end credits hit, you get a glimpse into the real-life of Susannah and everything she overcame, which brought tears to my eyes. It was quite heartbreaking. 

The best thing about this movie is Chloe’s acting. Yes, I would be the first to categorize it as over the top, but since everyone thought she was just bipolar and breaking down from the stress of living in New York, Chloe takes it to so many different levels when called upon. Whether it’s the highest of highs or the lowest of lows, she’s there to give one of her best performances on screen. 

There were many times I wasn’t engaged in the story as it unfolded. This is definitely not the best biography movie ever, but it is just short enough (1:28) to tell a compelling story. 

One of the most significant drawbacks, one I think many other people would agree upon, is the overacting from Susannah’s father, played by Richard Armitage. He plays the typical overprotective dad who won’t accept no for an answer. It can be overbearing at times and really made me dread his scenes. 

I was happy to finally cross this one off my list. I did not expect the story behind the title. The movie was moving and engaging because of Chloe’s performance. This story may not appeal to many people, but those who give it a shot will see the highs and lows of quick storytelling. 6/10


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