Brothers Of The Head

"Excellent"

Brothers Of The Head Review


As Terry Gilliam's film and world were crumbling around him, Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe were there with their cameras rolling. What once could have been a nifty little making-of documentary turned into a turbulent, God-doesn't-want-it chronicle of a filmmaker who is pushed to the edge and ultimately has to give up. Fulton and Pepe got lucky with Lost in La Mancha, but now they have to prove their worth with a sophomore effort. To prove that point they have chosen to pour their talent into a fictional story about... conjoined twin rock stars?

Fulton and Pepe thrust us into the lives of the Howe brothers (Luke and Harry Treadway), conjoined by a small extension of flesh at the middle of their ribs. At the age of 18, they are picked up by music promoter Zak Bedderwick and coupled with manager Nick Sydney (Sean Harris, pure sleaze with the moustache to match) and bassist Paul Day (Bryan Dick) to start a rock band. The sessions bring out the differences in the brothers: Tom's quiet sensitivity and genius at guitar and Barry's outlandish and audacious singing. The band's sound emulates punk icons The Sonics and shreds out on stage as Barry taunts the audience to touch the flesh that connects him to Tom. Things go haywire when a woman, medical journalist Laura (Tania Emery), falls for Tom and rouses feelings of wanting freedom from the eccentric, often dangerous Barry.

Done in a pseudomentary (they refuse to call it mockumentary) style, Brothers of the Head mixes normal handheld camera work with avant-garde films the brothers shot themselves and a botched Ken Russell biopic (starring Jonathan Pryce no less). Fulton and Pepe have found a tone that borders on gothic but brings to mind the mystic fogginess of the late 1770 period of Jane Austen's novels. The difference is that where Austen went for a certain romantic sorcery, Brothers of the Head handles itself with an eerily macabre sense of dread.

We hardly get to know the brothers, intentionally, which leaves us to take in all the stories and opinions of their friends and family (they have a sister). Fulton and Pepe sometimes wander into straight creepiness, especially with playing tapes of the brothers talking in their sleep over avant-garde Super-8 footage. What seems so interesting about the information we are given is that we are given almost the full story. The interviews with all involved including Eddie (an excellent Tom Bower), the man who filmed most of the documentary footage, subtly outlines what was going on between the brothers and Tom's growing intolerance brought on by his love for Laura. The last scene with Roberta, their sister, explains how the brothers ended with a haunting omission.

Pepe and Fulton seem to have mastered a certain ability to capture a time period while being authentic both to its trends and their style (not completely unlike Gilliam's work). The storytelling they are doing here (much due respect to ace screenwriter Tony Grisoni) is unlike anything I've seen in awhile; stating a style but not condensing it to some pre-determined end or structure. Frightening and deeply efficient, Fulton and Pepe have staved off their own Lost in La Mancha for at least one more movie.

The DVD includes deleted and extended scenes.

Reviewed as part of the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival.

Perhaps a Foghat cover is in order.



Brothers Of The Head

Facts and Figures

In Theaters: Friday 6th October 2006

Distributed by: IFC Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 68%
Fresh: 46 Rotten: 22

IMDB: 6.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer: , Gail Egan

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Zoolander 2 Movie Review

Zoolander 2 Movie Review

With virtually the same blend of wit and idiocy as the 2001 original, this fashion-scene...

A Bigger Splash Movie Review

A Bigger Splash Movie Review

Italian filmmaker Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love) reteams with Tilda Swinton for this fresh, tricky...

Deadpool Movie Review

Deadpool Movie Review

Both the filmmakers and the characters on-screen are so pleased with themselves that this might...

Trumbo Movie Review

Trumbo Movie Review

An entertaining film about sobering true events, this is the story of notorious screenwriter Dalton...

Goosebumps Movie Review

Goosebumps Movie Review

Mixing the action, comedy and horror from novelist R.L. Stein's books into a family-friendly package,...

Dad's Army Movie Review

Dad's Army Movie Review

The beloved 1970s British sit-com gets the big screen treatment, although there's been very little...

Spotlight Movie Review

Spotlight Movie Review

This film demonstrates that you don't need guns to make an exciting thriller. Based on...

Advertisement
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

Not the subtlest director working in Hollywood, Michael Bay brings his surging machismo to this...

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find...

The Big Short Movie Review

The Big Short Movie Review

Smart and snappy, this comedy is one of the scariest films of the year, using...

The 5th Wave Movie Review

The 5th Wave Movie Review

Also based on the first in a trilogy of post-apocalyptic teen novels, this thriller feels...

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ice Cube and Kevin Hart reteam for a sequel no one really asked for, following...

Room Movie Review

Room Movie Review

One of the most extraordinary films of the year, this drama cleverly weaves in events...

Creed Movie Review

Creed Movie Review

While this film is basically Rocky VII, it's also much more than that, and perhaps...

A Perfect Day Movie Review

A Perfect Day Movie Review

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.