A story in my book is effective if it makes you feel something that you have no first hand experience with.
Indiana Jones puts you in peril and makes you feel the advernture of being a hero (and a life long urge to wear dirty shirts and learning how to use a whip), Annie Hall puzzles you with the heartbreak of a relationship that was never supposed to have “a happily ever after” and you reflect on your failed attempts at finding love.
To me Brothers succeeds in it’s way it makes me feel how it must be to have a brother.
A bittersweet mix of trust, competition, love, jealousy and an unbreakable bond that you can only understand if you have one, and if you dont you realise that this is something you have been missing.
Looking at this Jim Sheridan directed family portrait of the effects of war and the attrocities inflicted on the soldiers and families stars Spiderman, the little girl from Leon and Donnie Darko, not a cast you would expect to deliver the kind of performances you see in this movie.
In a way you could say this reminds me of an alternate take on The Hurt Locker, If Jeremy Renner had stayed home and he had had a brother and Queen Amidala as his sweater wearing wife.
Tobey Mcquire’s character plays a Soldier caught and tortured during his mission to Iraq, his family thinking he is dead, reluctanlty decides to continue with life… But how do you deal with the reopening a closed chapter, how you deal with guilt and if anyone ever does return from War or have we lost these soldiers for ever as soon as they are captured.
The movie succeed for me as it avoids most of the melodrama that you might expects reading the synopsis and avoids most of the clichÃ©s associated with love traingles (which this movie really isn’t), the cast is amazing (special mention Bailee Madison playing the black sheep daugther in the final dinner scene, her tears are heartbreaking) and the direction is measured and restrained.
There are many subplots that aren’t explored to their fullest but that adds greatly to making these character feels real.
This movie was on the best of list 2009 for many film critics most notably Adam Kempenaar from Filmspotting.
I caught up with it only know because I think the failure of this movie ultimately is the inability to market it properly.
It’s not what you think but what it is is gripping and makes you revisit this world and characters many times.
Check it out as this movie will pass under most people’s radar and currently only has a 58% Rotten Tomatoes score.
I would urge you to trust in the ability of Jim Sheridan to tell a gripping story and a chance for the cast to rise above their image.
Here’s the trailer that in my mind doesnt give the movie it’s right due.
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