Film / The Brave One

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"I'm Erica Bain. And as you know, I walk the city."

Erica Bain (Jodie Foster) is a confident, content, reasonably left-wing radio host, madly in love with the city of New York and her fiancee David (Naveen Andrews). Sadly, he is killed and she is beaten within an inch of her life by a gang of thugs in Central Park one night. Emotionally shattered and incapable of feeling safe in the city she once adored, Erica buys a gun and attempts to move on. Fate has other plans, however, as she begins to encounter situation after situation that leave her with no choice but to blow somebody away. As the reputation of the mysterious vigilante begins to rise, Erica is torn between genuine disgust at her reluctant actions and the savage pleasure of dealing out first-hand justice to the blatantly deserving.

A touching and painful variation of the well-known Vigilante Man subgenre (Taxi Driver, Death Wish), due only in part to the vigilante not being a man at all.


Tropes:

  • Black and Grey Morality: Presents a more nuanced version of vigilantism than the usual revenge porn.
  • Black Market: Erica goes to buy a gun, but is told there's a thirty day waiting limit. A customer notices her look of desperation and approaches her outside the store, offering a Kar K-9 automatic for a thousand dollars, throwing in a box of ammunition and an impromptu instruction on how to load and fire it. There's a noticeable lack of Gun Porn compared to the gun buying scenes in Taxi Driver and Death Sentence.
  • Dead Air - When New York DJ Erica Bane resumes her first radio broadcast after her vicious attack (and subsequent vigilante slaying), she falls silent in the middle of reading her opening monologue. Her savvy producer decides to let the scene play out, and a few seconds later Erica starts over with a raw and emotional impromptu dialogue about how terrifying the once familiar city can become after being victimized for the first time.

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