One of the brightest hidden movie gems of 2018 with a stellar cast and excellent direction. You don’t need to be a fan of Westerns to enjoy this film.
The Sisters Brothers is Jacques Audiard’s first english-language film. Although, please don’t take my following statement the wrong way. Who would of thought that a french director could make such a good Western? I bet that if you would of mentioned the possibility last century, maybe there would of been more than a few loud chuckles.
Now putting what I mentioned quickly aside, this film surprised me in several ways. First was the dark humor that I so often enjoyed from the two gunslinging brothers John C. Reilly and Joaquin Phoenix. They work so well together! I would love to see this partnership again in another film because really we are all tired of the Reilly-Ferrell tag team. Please John! Do not team up with Will Ferrell again! Especially after the atrocious Holmes & Watson film! I am afraid that John C. Reilly lost his chance of even getting nominated for this film. Just like what happened with Eddie Murphy a decade ago between Dreamgirls and Norbit. But anyways (sorry for the little rant there) John deserves an academy nomination for this film and better projects (he was the only good actor in the King Kong movie). His character went through so many emotions in the story and he just executed in every shot (literally both ways). I also found both Joaquin and John switched in roles they usually perform in their movies. John’s character was more settled, while Joaquin’s character was loose and darkly humorous. I really enjoyed that dynamic. I also cannot forget about the performances of Jake Gyllenhall and Riz Ahmed. Their side of the tale was well done with great subtle chemistry. Including, an authenticity to their dialogue. Great cast all around.
Now I don’t want to go too long on this review but, I felt that Audiard was really able to adapt the screenplay according to the actual novel. The cinematography did its job in capturing the settings and some historical components like the innovation of having a toothbrush or a flushing toilet. And you will also find an interesting take about greed and the difficulty of creating a better world through wild times. Also kudos to the nice score during the protagonists’ travels and I really did not expect the movie to end the way that it did. I found it too bland for me.
So I give this movie a 4/5 score. There should have been better marketing for this film. It was so easy to miss with all the movies that came out toward the end of the year. Please watch this well made picture!