Critic Review - Groucho Reviews

It's one thing to make a film that's violent and profane; it's another to make one that's a moral black hole, and to do it because black looks cool. [Blu-ray]

March 15, 2009 Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews | Comments (13)
Groucho Reviews


Renee F.

Renee Freitas

A moral black hole? Are you really so ignorant that you can not see the moral in this movie? And everyone needs to stop whining about the violence, turn on the news and it is more violent than this movie will ever be. You head must be nothing but a black hole if you really can not see a moral in this story.

Oct 1 - 12:27 PM

Max the Movie Kid

Max Chittock

Hey, dumbass, this movie got 20% on Rotten Tomatoes. It's not something you'd expect to be dropped into your hands by the heavens.

Apr 15 - 07:14 AM

Nicholas G.

Nicholas Galligan

Actually, even though it scored a 20% with critics, the overall consensus is a 93%. It's a higly controversial movie that you might ACTUALLY have to watch before stating your opinion.
This movie is actually one of my favorites.

Aug 10 - 06:26 PM


M. S.

You mean the consensus of the idiot fanboys?

Jul 19 - 01:53 PM

david m.

david murphree

I can't change your mind if you feel BDS is just "macho bull****" but I do feel there are a few bullet points i should correct you on.

1."Because they're also smug idiots and jerks, they engage in a fight with some Russian mobsters, eventually slaying them in a messy showdown."

If you watched the movie you should remember that the brothers tried to reason with the mobsters. "Hey, why don't you have a drink with us? It's Saint Patty's day, everyone's Irish today." The mobsters tried to muscle them, and all of their friends out of the bar that was owned by a man who was not only a friend of theirs, he was also elderly. After trying to reason with the russians and warning them that they were out numbered, (not to mention offering them a drink) the russian's threw the FIRST PUNCH. And they only wound up dead later because they came after the brothers, cuffed one to the toilet and was about to kill the other execution style by shooting him in the back of the head. It was self defense.
What would you have done?

2."They like the taste of retributive murder, and declaring "the indifference of good men" the greater evil, they decide to become serial killers for God, going after "rapists and murderers and child molesters...[and] mafiosos."

They were certain the rest of the russian mafia would come after them. They took extreme measures due to an extreme situation. One of the brothers even states to their friend Rocco, "We don't really have a system, those first ones (the russians) just kind of fell into our lap."
Also, the brothers did not declare the "indifference of good men" the greater evil; the priest at the beginning of the movie did.

3."but what should we think of their sincerity when, after collecting filthy lucre following a multiple homicide, Murphy says, "I love our new job."

Do you remember what they did after swiping loot from the first russian mobsters they killed? They traded it in for guns,ammo, and provisions. It's not as if these guys were riding around in new cars.

4."we're led to believe the brothers are under God's protection"

There is a constant element of danger throughout that entire movie. It became quite obvious when they were both shot, tied up and beaten. Rocco himself was eventually killed. They do believe they're doing God's work, but the movie never offers any certainty that they will survive.

5."Duffy's seeming confusion comes to a head in a courtroom climax , during which Murphy speechifies, "Do not kill, do not rape, do not steal, these are principles which every man of every faith can embrace....There are varying degrees of evil, we urge you lesser forms of filth not to push the bounds and cross over, into true corruption, into our domain." So they're corrupt after all?"

You could easily take that out of context and twist it around to your own meaning if you partially quote it. But let's explore another line in that speech: "Now you will receive us. We do not ask for your poor or your hungry. We do not want your tired and sick. It is your corrupt we claim.It is your evil that will be sought by us."

"There are varying degrees of evil, we urge you lesser forms of filth not to push the bounds and cross over into true corruption, into our domain. But if you do, one day you will look behind you and you will see we three and on that day you will reap it."

They just said that it is our corrupt they claim. And for those who cross into those boundaries of true corruption will find the three of them. (Standing at the threshold of true evil and corruption) to speak. If a cop is trying to bust drug dealers, he's not going to go into the richest neighborhood in town; he's going into the most dangerous part of the city where all the corruption is. Do you understand this?

Mar 20 - 09:13 PM


Robert Schoenecker

With all the violence I see day to day in my profession, this was a fun no brainer shoot em up!! I enjoyed the story
and the craziness of this movie.
good dark humor.

Apr 29 - 11:58 AM

Nicholas G.

Nicholas Galligan

What were the primary points in positive review vs. negative?
How do the reviews vary from realistic to unrealistic vigilantism, such as spider-man vs. the boondocks saints?
What sub-cultures tend to critique in what way and how are they influenced?

The reason it's "violent and profane" is because the characters live in such an environment. This is part of the story and should not be the reason one would call it bad. If the movie itself portrayed said environment in an inadequate way, then one would have just cause to say the movie is poorly made. However this movie was full of rich symbolism showed primarily through the cinematography and story evolution. For that reason, I only recommend this movie for the more intelligent crowd.

As for the morality, your statement, "it's another to make one that's a moral black hole, and to do it because black looks cool." obviously implies that you did not understand the complex controversy alluded to throughout the entire movie. The reason the woman was hit at the beginning was to show that the treat everyone equally regardless of gender. They also kill those who have raped and murdered and so on, that are PROTECTED FROM JUDGEMENT. Men who have done these things, but still escaped with nothing more than a small fine. So far we have covered equality and justice, and its not looking too morally incorrect to me.

As for the character of Rocco, he is not the one who was blessed by God, nor was he morally just by any means. The brothers in the movie have been given a mission from God and are protected for they are good men, this is shown during the shootout scene between the four blessed men. Notice how each one was shot, but Rocco lost his finger. This shows that while none of them are completely pure Rocco is less protected, implying he is not as pure. Also, after he begins to lose himself later in the movie, he is killed, implying is no longer pure enough to sustain his divine protection. Rocco represented how the average man would get lost in the power.

Finally, I'd like to point out the credits. They were showing the type of controversy this would evoke in real life. This was meant to let the viewer decide if what they did was right or wrong. So saying the movie itself is a "moral black hole" is really quite untrue as the movie offered an objective stance conserning the morallity of the brothers' actions.

So please learn how to critique movies correctly before you EVER do it again.

Aug 10 - 07:01 PM

Nicholas G.

Nicholas Galligan

Oh, I forgot. As for you reviewers, it would be helpful to think about the questions asked at the beginning of the prior comment before commenting on a critique.

Aug 10 - 07:05 PM

Jacob w.

Jacob wickham

you wouldnt know what a good movie was if shoved it up ur ass

Dec 15 - 10:47 AM


M. S.

You must have been looking in a mirror.

Jul 19 - 01:53 PM

Matt Festle

Matt Festle

you sir, are well..i can't even say. i'd like to see your representation of a good film. go ahead, film it, an original idea. I'll tell YOU if it's good or not. dick. this movie was a little too smart for you.

Aug 21 - 10:18 PM


M. S.

This is coming from somebody who gave Sucker Punch a perfect five. If you think this movie was a smart, a somewhat intelligent film will fry your brain.

Sep 11 - 02:19 PM

Michael Mogush

Michael Mogush

This is the penultimate film for illustrating the detachment from reality that often plagues dedicated critics of art: A 17% from critics versus a 93% from over 240,000 users.

Critics only seem to appreciate when individual film elements are exceptional or original. This movie doesn't try to excel in any single element, but instead employs a combination of respectable action, humor, Dirty Harry ethics, and detective-work storytelling to produce an overall very enjoyable film. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

As for the ethics, they are nearly identical to Dirty Harry (which Canavese didn't review but has a 95% from critics). Liberals may find it objectionable, because they place a high value on criminal rights but forget the rights of the victims, which are compromised by the measures they support to protect the former. It is a simple a short-sightedness.

Oct 31 - 10:27 PM

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