Last night some friends and I went to a late showing of the movie Brothers. I am no movie critic, and this blog is no film forum. However, it encompassed so many emotions that I wanted to let you all know that it is out there.
My friend called me, asking if I wanted to see some movie about brothers. Well...let me at least check it out before I commit to going, I told her. So I found the trailer and watched it. From the trailer, I could tell that it was going to be a rough, intense film. I still wanted to see it. It stars Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Natalie Portman. I think I've enjoyed every film that I have ever seen all 3 of them in, so that was sure to help.
If you haven't heard of it, I'm posting the trailer below. It is an R-rated film for "language and some disturbing violent content." Why would I blog about something like that, you ask? Well, because this film shows a side of life that we don't know much about...and maybe some of us don't want to know what war is like, but I do. We can't be afraid of the things that we don't want to hear about.
I have a lot of favorite movies. Of the many, there is a small group that are my favorite favorites. They are ones that I can watch over and over and over and never find them old or uneventful. A good portion of those select few are war movies, and I use that term not in the political sense but just in the film sense. They are about war, not the politics of war. I cannot even begin to explain to you, let alone myself, why some of my favorite movies are war ones. I don't like blood, guts, gore, guns, and death. I don't in the least. They're just great films, and I am also fascinated by what goes on in the human mind when it is engulfed in conflict. It probably helps to back up this quirk that my favorite time periods are all centered around great wars in history. Everyone has their morbid fascinations, maybe this is mine.
I cried. I cried because of the movie itself and what it represents, which is reality. It isn't a war movie in the political sense, so don't get all political on me. An article from movieline.com accurately describes it as "a family drama, a study of grief, an exploration of the darkest reaches of human nature, and a remake." It also says that, "You could say Brothers reverses the standard war movie formula by featuring the war in the soldier rather than the soldier in the war, and for that reason alone it does deserve some degree of differentiation."
Maguire, Gyllenhaal, and Portman did a fine job of making this movie feel real. At some points, I forgot that I was sitting in the theater. It is both good and terrible. Good because it is a great film. Terrible because things like that truly happen to real people. While watching this, it also made me think of friends who are in the military...some of whom graduated with me. They're so young! I'm frightened to think of what could happen to them.
Brothers, is in my opinion a very powerful and moving film. I recommend it, but, to quote that age-old saying, it is not for the faint of heart.
Lord have mercy on us all and bless our troops.