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Captain Sam Cahill embarks on his fourth tour of duty, leaving his high school sweetheart and their two young daughters behind. When his Black Hawk helicopter is shot down, his family is shocked. Sam's younger brother, a drifter just out of jail, tries to fill the void. But Sam is not dead. He returns home to find a nervous mood settles over the family.
Drama - This is a dark and serious drama for adult moviegoers. Fans of the
three stars should be pleased with this showcase for their dramatic
talents. Language, violence, and adult subject matter make this
inappropriate for kids.
PROFANITY: Over 30 F-words, 7 S-words, 1 GD, a number of others. SEX/NUDITY: None. VIOLENCE: Shootings and beatings. DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Alcohol, tobacco, marijuana. ACTION: A helicopter crash. COMEDY: Some cute kid humor.
Berardinelli, Internet CriticFull Review Very Good This is a rich, thoughtful, challenging motion picture, and one of 2009's best.
Roger EbertFull Review Very Good Actors possess a great gift to surprise us, if they find the right material in their hands.
USA TodayFull Review Good But in exploring the complicated nature of family bonds, Brothers is thought-provoking. The wounds inflicted by the cruelty of a troubled parent can prove as painful as battle scars.
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
OPINION OVERVIEW The following is the original "What's Worth
Watching" write-up for this movie.
Based on a theater exit polling of 106 moviegoers:
TEENS:GREAT REVIEWS from the males and especially the females! No one rated it below above average.
TWENTYSOMETHINGS:Three-quarters of the males and females enjoyed "Brothers" very much. Most of the rest rated it "Good/Average." Only a small percentage rated it below average.
ADULTS:Three-quarters of the males enjoyed "Brothers" very much. The remaining quarter rated it from average to poor. Females enjoyed "Brothers" even more than the guys. Only a very small percentage of the ladies rated it average or below average.
The powerful story of two siblings, thirty-something Captain Sam Cahill (Tobey Maguire) and younger brother Tommy Cahill (Jake Gyllenhaal), who are polar opposites. A Marine about to embark on his fourth tour of duty, Sam is a steadfast family man married to his high school sweetheart, the aptly named Grace (Natalie Portman), with whom he has two young daughters (Bailee Madison, Taylor Grace Geare). Tommy, his charismatic younger brother, is a drifter just out of jail who's always gotten by on wit and charm. He slides easily into his role as family provocateur on his first night out of prison, at Sam's farewell dinner with their parents, Elsie (Mare Winningham) and Hank Cahill (Sam Shepard), a retired Marine.
Shipped out to Afghanistan, Sam is presumed dead when his Black Hawk helicopter is shot down in the mountains. At home in suburbia, the Cahill family suddenly faces a shocking void, and Tommy tries to fill in for his brother by assuming newfound responsibility for himself, Grace, and the children.
But Sam is not dead; he and a fellow soldier have been captured by Taliban fighters. In Afghanistan's harsh, remote Pamir Mountains, Sam is subjected to traumas that threaten to rob him of his very humanity. At the same time that Sam's sense of self is being destroyed overseas, Tommy's self-image is strengthening at home. And in the grief and strangeness of their new lives, Grace and Tommy are naturally drawn together. Their longstanding frostiness dissolves, but both are frightened and ashamed of the mutual attraction that has replaced it.
When Sam unexpectedly returns to the States, a nervous mood settles over the family. Sam, uncharacteristically withdrawn and volatile, grows suspicious of his brother and his wife. Their familiar roles now nearly reversed, Sam and Tommy end up facing the ultimate physical and mental challenge when they confront each other. In the shifting family dynamics, who will dominate? And how will the brothers come to terms with issues of love, loyalty, and manhood—and with the woman caught between them?