Brothers (2009) Movie Reviews

Brothers (2009)

Brothers (2009)

Release Date: Dec 04, 2009

Genre: DramaWar

Rating: (R)

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User reviews on Brothers (2009)

  • 1
    Brothers a movie about 2 brothers, their relation to each other and their other family members, especially their father and the wife of one brother.
    The military and the war in Afghanistan in the middle and being the big impact on their lives.
    Everything is displayed very realistically and believable. However it becomes too "real" when the brother who is a Marine clubs another Marine to death in Afghanistan while pressured by the Taliban and given the choice between his life and the other Marine's life.
    The scene is gruesome, horrible and senseless. It will leave you questioning the members of our Armed Forces and their morals.
    This whole movie will do nothing for you otherwise, it has no entertainment value. The only question it raised with me is who is making the movies and what is their agenda?
    This does not mean that I do not question the origin of movies like Tears of the Sun, We were Soldiers Once etc.
    Movies can be entertaining while still raising concerns, ideas and questions. If Hollywood does not agree with the situation in Afghanistan then they need to go out there and make a difference. If not, they need to stick to making movies for people about people and entertain. I have left out good examples of very good movies because they would be personal preferences.
    Leave the making of opinions to the viewers, Hollywood. Just because we are brainless enough to watch your movies en masse and neverending does not mean we cannot figure it out for ourselves.
    My sympathies to the families of fallen service members.
  • 3
    This was an interesting story line and I did like it. I did not waste
    my money seeing this movie at all. I will admit I don't think I will
    buy it. Maybe when it gets down to $5.00. I always buy the movies I will watch over and over again. I am a BIG movie
    goer especially when the movie pre-screening is very interesting.
  • 3
    Reviewed by Richard von Busack from
    One hopes there's a way to pan a movie while simultaneously honoring the troops, but seeing the dud "Brothers" on the day that Obama announced the surge just added to the numb horror of the day. Jim Sheridan's remake of Suzanne Bier and Anders Thomas Jensen's 2004 Danish original is shot in wintery New Mexico (doubling for Minnesota); the scenes in Afghanistan match the frozen fields there, so the film is all one icy plain filled with familial pain.
    Tommy (Jake Gyllenhaal) is just out of the joint after three years for bank robbery; his brother, Sam (Tobey Maguire), is a captain in the Marines about to head back for another stint overseas. Grace (Natalie Portman), Sam's wife, and the mother of his two children, settle down to wait for his return. But Sam's helicopter is shot down by the Taliban, and he's taken prisoner and brutalized. Meanwhile, back in the States, black sheep Tommy becomes better friends with Grace than his brother would like.
    Portman is gorgeous as always but far out of her depth as an actress here. David Benioff's script owes something to the original but probably more to "The Deer Hunter." (Not to spoil the revelation of the atrocity, but these foreigners never seem to realize it's a bad idea to arm a prisoner of war.) It's up to Maguire to animate the role of the soldier. In post-traumatic-stress mode wielding a gun and screaming to the heavens, he's showboating with all smokestacks belching.
    The film won't make the troops feel better, and it won't do the home front much good either; it’s hoped that the acting will be convincing enough to touch some nerve about the endless war. It would take a more delicate touch than this movie has to get the desired reaction. As for authenticity, Portman and Maguire look like a pair of Priuses parked outside a honky-tonk. Certainly Gyllenhaal is touching, but beside him there's not much relief from Mare Winningham and Sam Shepard as the brothers' stepmother and violent father, respectively. Sheridan's deftness with the less het-up moments demonstrates the film's only connection with the real.
  • 3
    I'm always weary of remakes of foreign films. They always seem inferior to the original, mostly because they dumb the film down for American audiences. Add to that the fact that this remake is one of my least favorite film premises, the emotionally wounded soldier returns home, and you have a recipe for a film I can't stand. Brothers somehow avoids this, and delivers an emotionally gripping experience that pales to the original only because of its Hollywood sheen. The film stars Toby Maguire as Sam, a Marine on his fourth tour of duty who is supposedly killed by Taliban fighters in Afghanistan. Back at home, his ex-con brother Tommy (Jake Gyllenhaal) helps grieving wife Grace (Natalie Portman) and they end up being drawn together. After Sam returns, he and Tommy find they have changed places, with Tommy being more responsible and Sam being physically and psychologically affected by his time being tortured. The film explores some really heavy themes, and luckily, it doesn't try to dumb them down, or devolve into melodrama. It also doesn't have an opinion about war, and allows us to make our own decisions about the subject matter. The performances are uniformly excellent. I'm not a huge Toby Maguire fan, but he's asked to carry this film, and he does a really good job of digging deep to bring out the conflicting emotions in Sam. It's rare these days that a film is made for adults that explores human dynamics and allows us to decide how we feel about the characters ourselves. If you're looking for a movie like that, you will want to see Brothers before it's overshadowed by other, more inferior films.
  • 3
    This wasn't worth seeing in the theater. You basically have the entire plot layed out in all the previews and trailers with just filler. It was no spider man 3 but worth watching if everything else is sold out.

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