Did anyone know that Tobey could act? (by sclark-41)
What drew me to this movie was the cast of Jake Gyllenhaal and Natalie Portman, two phenomenal actors in their own regards. The only expectation that I had going into see this film was that I would be unimpressed by Tobey Maguire. Having seen him in several films including Spider-Man , I must say that I wasn't prepared for the incredible performance he provided.This movie was very simplistic. Nothing flashy, no real special effects, small amounts of simple guitar music as a soundtrack. But it conveyed a whole roller coaster of emotions from the beginning. The growth of Jake <more>
Gyllenhaal's character, the anguish displayed by Natalie Portman, the palpable pain and suffering by Tobey Maguire, and the fear and anger displayed by the eight-year-old Bailee Madison all combine for a very gripping tale.Many regard this movie as anti-war. I simply do not see it as such. Soldiers are praised for their heroism on the battlefield which they completely deserve , but all too often the wounds they suffer physically and mentally are disregarded. This movie illustrates the very real problem of the mental health of our service men and women, and the problems it causes in family dynamics.
Finally an adult film with good script, cast and direction (by gilko)
I was not looking forward to this film another anti-military anti-war film but this is none of that! It is a wonderful story of people and their relationships and emotions. The story is beautifully told and the cast is uniformly wonderful although it seemed at first the brothers might better have switched parts but as the plot unfolds the casting is perfect. The plot: In a family of a retired Marine Sgt Sam Shepard there are two sons Toby Maguire an active duty Captain and a Ex con wastrel Jake Guillenhaal who gets out of prison as his brother is about to return to the war in <more>
Afghanistan. When his brother is lost in Afghanistan the brother slowing steps up to support the wife and two girls. When Maguire Is found alive months later the dynamic of the family is greatly changed as the whole family works out the complications of their lives. This is one of the best pictures of the year, dramatic, involving, with good dialog and scene; and the actors and director play them to the hilt.
Very few films that I see can affect me to tears... this one did manage to do that. I am a jaded Industry member that has studied & participated in many films over my 26-plus yr. career, therefore when I got to that point-of-no-return tissue-wise, I had plenty of adjacent sniffles around me. This film has many stellar performances to speak of and most surprising to me was Tobey Maguire's! He has finally won me over as a fan. I am certain that there are at least 5 Oscar Noms. in store for this movie: Best Pix, Best Director, Best Actor Tobey , Best Actress Natalie Portman , and Best <more>
Supp. Actress 8-yr-old Bailee Madison, a phenom! Nat Port called her at the screening, "...a little genius!"
Two brothers, one returning from prison, one heading as a Marine to Afghanistan.This film is apparently a remake of a Danish film that had the same story line.But it didn't have Tobey Maguire and Jake Gyllenhaal! Maguire reaches into the darkest corners of his soul to flesh out the good brother, the Marine, who returns from Afghanistan with a staggering burden of guilt.Gyllenhaal is amazing, transforming an angry, unsure ex-con into a believable figure of redemption, slowly growing before our eyes as the story unfolds.Natalie Portman is excellent and look for Carey Mulligan's four <more>
minutes of screen time.This is not an anti-war film except in the sense that any film that shows war either glorifies it unrealistically or jars us into questioning, if it is realistic. The scenes in Afghanistan seem authentic. The tortures are not so so graphic as some of the other reviews imply. They will cause you to wince, but its good film making, not microscopic detail.I want to search out Susanne Bier's 2005 film "Broedre"--it can't lessen the impact of this one, however.
What today's soldiers returning home have to face (by rastan1903)
Jake Gyllenhaal, Natalie Portman, Tobey Maguire, Clifton Collins Jr., Bailee Madison and Sam Shepard are among just a few great cast members that come together in this modern role movie to show the audience what real acting is all about. The movie starts off with this wonderful military family where the man of the house has been deployed to Afghanistan. Somewhere within the midst of the movie he becomes a POW and everyone believes he is dead. Back at home in the US he has a family of a young wife and two very beautiful daughters. He also still has his father around as well as an older <more>
brother. As the movie progresses the woman's husband is reported to her as KIA and she tells his brother and the whole family. Instead of his brother abandoning his little brothers family he steps up and decides to help.Somewhere in the midst of taking care of the family for his brother he falls in love with the woman and the two starts a life together. She does this because she believes she is a widow now and does not want to spend the rest of her life alone or with some man that the children do not know. Things go real well and the brother is able to take care of the kids and the wife. Then one day she gets a call from the military and they tell her that her husband has been rescued and is alive and that they made a mistake by telling her he was dead. When he comes home he finds out about his wife and brothers relationship and loses control. He becomes suicidal as well as homicidal and the action begins. This is a very realistic movie and one that will definitely show some of what today's soldiers returning home have to face.
Powerhouse performances gear towards a satisfying conclusion! (by Red_Identity)
Brothers is a remake of the Danish film with the same title, and while I have not seen the Danish version, I can say that Brothers is a powerful film. Academy Award nominee Jim Sheridan directed the film from a screenplay by David Benioff. To start off, the script has some very powerful dialogue and scenes, but it does have it's share of flaws. However, these flaws are small, and with Sheridan directing, he is able to bring the cast to give powerhouse performances. I have never seen Tobey Maguire give a performance like this, and I honestly hope he gets an Oscar nomination. He succeeds <more>
making his character change and progress from before he went to war and then after the tragedy that happened to him. He is scary and very realistic. Jake Gyllenhaal is very solid as his brother, but seeing how he has less to work with, he makes the most of his role. As strong as I thought Maguire was, I thought Natalie Portman was working at a higher level. She is painful to watch because of her grief and her emotions. She honestly could not have played it better. Portman should also be getting awards recognition. Sheridan is an extremely capable director because he was not only able to get performances out of the three lead actors but also out of the small girls. Taylor Geare was good, but honestly, if there was someone who impressed me the most, it must have been the 10 year-old Bailee Madison. I remember seeing her in Bridge To Terabithia and remember thinking 'Wow, this girl can act'. Again, here to a higher level, she is devastating and I am really amazed at how great she can act. I have never seen someone under 15 be this good, and I am sure she will have a very successful movie career ahead of her. I was very satisfied with the ending because it did not end in the way I was predicting, and that is something good, but rare. Overall, Brothers was a lot better than i thought it would be. I was expecting it to be a lot more melodramatic and a lot more corny, and so I was very impressed. The acting deserves mention, and because of this film I will seek out the original Danish version.
Brothers is something we may have seen before - if not in its original incarnation from Denmark in 2004 then The Deer Hunter - then it is something that surprises just on the vulnerability, subtlety and ferocity of the actors in their roles. It's not about what the trailer pushes, which is an affair between a guy Jake Gyllenhaal and his sister in law Natalie Portman while the one guy's brother Tobey Maguire is away at war. There is one scene of that, but that's not really what the film is 'about' per-say. It's about the personal affects of war on one man, a <more>
horrific tragedy that befalls him, and how he has to live with that the rest of his life, specifically in front of his wife and children. Maguire's Sam says it simply towards the end: "Only the dead see the end of war. I have seen the end of War. How do I go on living?" If I may have spoiled the message of the movie- and in its own microcosm way it's as anti-war or perhaps just anti-torture as it could get in modern movies- it shouldn't detract from the pleasures of Brothers. This is seeing the actors- Portman, Gyllenhaal, Sam Shephard, especially Maguire- fill in these characters with enough depth and passions and fears and desires and ghosts that make them more than real to us. That's not just their achievement but director Jim Sheridan's. He lets his players breathe life into characters who, while not wooden or two-dimensional by any stretch, need that extra push as seen in David Benioff's characterizations and scenarios. Family life, its fragility and it's equal amount of love and self-torment, is what counts again, Deer Hunter , and it's this that works in the film.A word though about Tobey Maguire. I'm not the only critic pointing him out, and it goes without saying he's not the only worthwhile actor in the cast there's even performances by the girls playing Sam's kids that are extraordinary . But it's the transformation that really counts. Perhaps it's noteworthy that both brothers do transform in the film, as Tommy, the ex-con, goes from being a drunken nobody to stepping up to help his brother's barely-holding-it-together wife after the news that her husband is dead, while Sam is in the downward spiral. It's crucial too that Sheridan shows those scenes in Afghanistan that cause Sam to change so radically as he does the way they're inter-cut in the at-home narrative is a little uneasy, one of the flaws of the film , so that we see a good person shrunk down to his deepest, darkest depths.When that last third comes around, it's electrifying how intense Maguire can get, even when he's just in his insinuating mode ala Jake LaMotta of accusing his brother of adultery. For anyone just looking at Maguire as Spider-Man's Peter Parker must give this a look to see his range; indeed a double feature of Brothers and Seabiscuit will show how Maguire is one of the most underrated actors under forty in Hollywood. If the role calls for it, as it does here, he goes to town, a you-can't-blame-him Oscar bait performance.
Based on the Danish film, Brødre, Tobey Maguire plays Sam Cahill, a marine who goes off to Afghanistan and allegedly is killed in action. His brother Tommy, played by Jake Gyllenhaal, an ex-con, winds up looking after Sam's wife, Grace Natalie Portman and her daughters. As the story moves on, Tommy's negative attitude toward her and his outlook changes and their relationship develops. When Sam, who is found to be alive, returns home, there's a mixture of both joy and resentment among the characters, but to add, Sam has returned a changed and psychologically-damaged man.The film <more>
mainly focuses on the family drama and relationships of the characters, inter-cut with scenes of Sam in action and imprisoned/tortured in Afghanistan. The progression of the plot takes its time to develop, but it feels organic. The characters feel real. While one could see the film as a criticism of war and the negative effects that war has on the family of veterans, the film is more a character-driven drama, and doesn't touch much into politics.Admittedly, the plot itself isn't anything drastically new and one may imagine a plot like this in a made-for-TV drama if not for the emotional depth, intensity, and solid performances from Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Natalie Portman. One of the interesting plot points involve the brothers' father's in a fine performance from Sam Shepard favoritism for Sam, while looking down on Tommy as the "failure." The love/hate dynamics between the three are interesting and believable even as the two brothers go through drastic character changes.Tobey Maguire's performance is particularly noteworthy as Sam, a marine and a loving husband who comes back transformed into a physically emaciated, psychologically-scarred, ticking time bomb. My image of Tobey as Spider-Man now feels like a distant memory especially in comparison to what he portrays here. The two children who play the two daughters of Sam in this film give very natural performances in their varied reactions to difficult situations around them. Jake Gyllenhaal does strong work as Tommy, whose character transformation makes us want to root for him, despite his shady beginnings and flaws. To top off, Natalie Portman is radiant here, turning in a poignant, complex performance as a mother of two, who must deal with the initial mourning of her husband, the joy of his return, and the messy aftermath. Ultimately, her nuanced performance is the glue that holds the film together and make the other characters matter, and one can't help but marvel at the maturity of her performance.Directed by Jim Sheridan The Boxer , this film is a great showcase for all performances involved, while portraying an engaging, intense story about familial loyalty, redemption, and difficult relationships. In the wrong hands, this film could've gone the route of the by-the-numbers Hollywood cliché, but as it is, it remains a solid drama. I give Brothers *** out of **** stars.More of my reviews are update on http://twitter.com/d_art
Brothers is a decent movie showing the trauma both a soldier and his family face due to Tobey Maguire's "job" as a marine. Although the script could have been improved and more drama could have been added throughout the movie, the actors in Brothers deliver superbly.Tobey Maguire is rumored to be mentioned at the Oscars and his performance probably deserves it, especially during his "break down" scene. Natalie Portman as the wife and Sam Shepard acting as the father also deliver plausible and emotional performances. Carey Mulligain, who I almost did not recognise, <more>
plays a cameo role and Clifton Collins Jnr also makes a brief appearance.If you haven't watched the trailer for this film, do not watch it as it gives much away. Also, do not read about this movie much before you watch it either. The less you know about Brothers, the better its plot will unfold.I also must point out that although Tobey Maguire is the one with the Golden Globe nomination and rumoured Oscar nomination, Jake Gyllenhaal delivers a much more subtle, and on the whole, a better performance than Tobey. He seemed to connect me more to his character with some comedic lines, gentle eyes and genuine acts of redemption. I rate Brothers one star higher because of Jake and if it were up to me, he'd get a supporting actor nomination.Don't expect a masterpiece like The Deer Hunter, but if you're looking for some new, depressive entertainment, then Brothers is a good flick...It had potential and it delivered on most of it; however, some potential was also left unaccounted for.