Thursday, December 17, 2009

And It Ain't Groucho and Chico...

Several days after seeing the new film, "Brothers," I still have not formed an opinion. Or, to be more exact, I have formed multiple opinions that change from moment to moment. The good news is I'm still thinking about the movie. And maybe the bad news is that I'm still thinking about the movie.

I had been intrigued by the trailer. A home impacted by the deployment of a Marine to Afghanistan. I wanted to feel some of these sensations. In short order, I will soon have my "psuedo" nephew go through the same process. He'll be a part of the 30,000 troops that President Urkel will be sending there in 2010. Naturally, it's on our minds and I wanted to learn just a little of what the feelings might be here on the homefront. With this film, I learned a lot. And learned very little.

Tobey Maguire and Jake Gyllenhaal are the brothers and that is a slam dunk. For years, I've been getting those two actors mixed up. Marine Captain Tobey is married to high school sweetheart Natalie Portman and they have two obnoxious daughters. He is the golden boy. Jake, meanwhile, has been a jailbird and the resident familial fuck up. So, there you have it. The white sheep and the black sheep. When Tobey's character is a helicopter crash over in Terroristville, he is presumed dead. As soon as his memorial service is over, Jake slowly takes over his brother's role as father and husband. Within fifteen screen minutes, he and the missus are swapping spit in front of the fireplace.

But, wait, as the Slap Chop guy on TV says, there's more. Tobey and a buddy really survived and they are being held captive in a Taliban sinkhole. Ultimately, Tobey is forced to kill his pal and you just know that's not the easiest thing for him to get over when he finally returns stateside. He spends the rest of the movie staring into space, busting up kitchen cabinets, and accusing his brother of screwing his wife. An episode of Gomer Pyle USMC this isn't.

By the end of the movie, the white sheep and the black sheep have exchange wool colors and Tobey winds up in a mental hospital that is hopefully not connected to Fort Hood. Everything is ambiguous at the end.

Just like the war itself.

In my parallel universe, I don't know what to make of the upcoming surge there. I certainly want all those terrorists busted and dead forever. At the same time, I realize there is a price. A dear one, perhaps. Maybe, my opinion of the film is a direct correlation to my opinion of the war. And, frankly, I have no confidence in the POTUS' ability to lead a military operation, when the sum of his past organizational experience was probably chaperoning the local Boys' Club to a White Sox game.

So, yes, one more time, my emotions are scattered. About everything. Yet, after seeing the harrowing scenes of torture depicted in "Brothers," I am sure about one thing. Anybody who wants to go easy on any prisoners we have captured is an idiot. You watch what these animals do in this film and you will want to become a fan of waterboarding on Facebook. These pigs get everything they deserve.

I'm also confident about another thing. My "psuedo" nephew doesn't have to worry. I don't think his brother is going to make a run at his girlfriend while he's overseas.

Dinner last night: Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich.

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