Brothers (2004)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: This tense, understated drama explores the complications of individual and social ethics stemming from the repercussions of war on one man and his family.


Movie Info

Two brothers unwittingly exchange roles under the fog of war in this powerful drama. Michael (Ulrich Thomsen) and Jannick (Nikolaj Lie Kaas) are two brothers who have always meshed as well as oil and water. Michael is a caring husband and father who risen to the rank of major in the Danish Army, while Jannick is an alcoholic with a violent streak who has been in and out of prison much of his life. Jannick has just been released after serving time for armed robbery when Michael learns he's being … More

Rating: R (for violence, language and brief nudity)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Anders Thomas Jensen
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 20, 2005
Box Office: $0.2M
Runtime:
IFC Films - Official Site

Cast


as Henning

as Ditte

as Allentoft

as Preben 1

as Samial-Tariq, Afghan...

as Farid, Afghanistan

as Wisam, Afghanistan

as Hossein, Afghanistan

as Hassan Afghanistan

as Officer 1

as Officer 2

as Faengselsbetjent

as Faengselsbetjent 2

as Politibetjent 1
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Brothers

All Critics (83) | Top Critics (32)

Bier, honored as an Emerging Master at the Seattle International Film Festival this year, is clearly a director to watch. In her hands, a story that could become melodramatic is gripping and heartbreaking.

Full Review… | June 24, 2005
Seattle Times
Top Critic

At its core, Susanne Bier's wrenching portrayal of the shifting dynamics within a Danish family is really about survival, about how we cope in the face of shattering grief and what we'll do -- anything, really -- to save ourselves.

Full Review… | June 10, 2005
Miami Herald
Top Critic

A profoundly affecting movie, one in which our sympathies lie with everyone.

Full Review… | June 9, 2005
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

Feels like an amalgam of newsreel and stage drama, but with the most potent aspects of both art forms.

Full Review… | June 3, 2005
Washington Post
Top Critic

Keeps itself floating above the suds thanks to Bier's crisp and lively visual design, the general loveliness of her cast ... and her attention to small moments of arresting domestic authenticity.

Full Review… | June 3, 2005
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Strong performances and scenes of the father's imprisonment in war camps make for tense viewing.

Full Review… | November 7, 2012
Empire Magazine Australasia

Audience Reviews for Brothers

One brother, recently released from prison, befriends his brother's wife, while the latter is believed dead in Afghanistan.
We watch no film in a vacuum. The films we've seen in the past inevitably affect how we view new films. In this case, I couldn't help but compare the original Danish version of this story to the American remake starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Tobey Maguire, and Natalie Portman. All three American actors have turned in good, sometimes great, performances in other work, but I found the American version staid and uninteresting.
Now, I compare that to this film. The performances by Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Ulrich Thomsen, and Connie Nielsen are far and away better. Even on the most superficial level, Kaas looks like a fuck-up brother while Thomsen's maturity and political commitment resonate his every move. The final climactic moments hold more suspense and engender more fear because Thomsen's emotional decay is a more extreme inner torment and his physical stature is more demanding than anything that Tobey Maguire could inspire.
There are almost no differences in the stories, but the way the original is told, by actors who are truly right for their parts rather than Hollywood stars trying to fit into unwilling molds, makes Brothers compelling drama.
As much as I liked this film, especially in comparison to its flaccid American cousin, the story is still littered with "must-happens," in Super Reviewer Alice Shen's words.
Overall, Brothers proves that a clone is never as good as the original.

hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

½

Incredibly compelling take on the consequences of war and how it affects the family, in particular the relationship between the two brothers. Contains a great performance from Ulrich Thomsen and and the brilliant Connie Nielsen. This is film making at its absolute best, just a shame Bier doesn't do more films-I must check out the rest of her filmography If you enjoyed this check out After The Wedding another great film by Susanne Bier.

SarahG1988
Sarah Gaish

Super Reviewer

½

The original BROTHERS movie. I liked it alot better than the American version, even though I thought that one was good, too. There was just something much more moving about this one. I have to say that the American movie script was very close to this script..almost word for word sometimes. But, on the whole, I think that they did a better job telling the story in this one. The camera work alone had a better artsy feel to it. Nice movie!

itsjustme2004
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

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