REVIEW: Brothers

28 03 2010

When it comes to “Brothers,” I’m not sure what I should be reviewing: the movie or the trailer.

If you managed to escape Lionsgate’s advertising push, good for you.  Don’t watch the trailer because you can still be wowed by this movie.

But if you are among the vast majority that watched the trailer, you are going to find yourself deeply unsatisfied watching “Brothers.”  In essence, it’s an exercise in frustration to watch.  You will probably find yourself like me, wondering why I spent an hour and 45 minutes watching a full-length movie when I had already seen the condensed, two and a half minute version.

I feel like I would have loved this movie had it not been for the money-grubbing executives who feel the need to put all of a movie’s firepower into the trailer in order to put an audience in the theater.  But unfortunately, all of the intensity that “Brothers” can deliver is revealed in the trailer, serving to satisfy only those who visit YouTube or go to see some other movie.

As you can tell by the trailer, there really is some good stuff here.  The wow factor comes mainly from the three marquee actors, all of whom deliver powerful performances.  Tobey Maguire, who earned a Golden Globe nomination for his work, is haunting, particularly after he returns home from captivity in Afghanistan.  Natalie Portman as the grief-stricken wife is solid as usual, and Jake Gyllenhaal helps to build some very taut tension with his brother and disapproving father.

In fact, I almost feel like I should be giving two separate grades for “Brothers.”  The trailer gets an A, but to the movie, I must give a … C+ /



3 responses

31 03 2010

Ah sorry to hear the trailer ruined it for you. I definitely feel that trailers tend to ruin most movies. Anyways, I did highly enjoy the movie. The acting was superb from top to bottom and the script and direction were excellent as well. It was an A- for me.

31 03 2010

No argument here — the trailer is a sham. Off with its head!

Still, I didn’t let it kill the film for me because: a) I know Tobey Maguire can act and b) I know Jake Gyllenhaal can act. Both of them knocked it out of the park for me, with Tobey hitting emotional highs that actually made me fear for his sanity and Jake playing it devastatingly subtle. They’re why I gave the movie an “A” and included it in my Best Films of 2009 rundown.

31 03 2010

It was your review that held me onto the hope that it would be better than the mediocre reviews it got! But the trailer just proved an insurmountable obstacle…

Jake and Tobey were good, Tobey came the closest to great.

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