03/04/2015  
From the Dark on DVD & Blu-ray Apr 14Wordworld: Birthday Party! on DVD Mar 17FirePower (Limited Edition) on Blu-ray & DVD Mar 10The Imitation Game download on Mar 20, DVD & Blu-Ray on Mar 31Something Wicked on DVD Mar 17Believe Me in Blu-ray & DVD Mar 3NFL Super Bowl Champions XLIX: New England Patriots on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital Mar 3

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Netflix inks documentary deal with Leonardo DiCaprio...
From the Dark on DVD & Blu-ray Apr 14...
Wordworld: Birthday Party! on DVD Mar 17...
Kelly Osbourne leaves 'Fashion Police' ...
FirePower (Limited Edition) on Blu-ray & DVD Mar 10...
Passage: Leonard Nimoy...
The Imitation Game download on Mar 20, DVD & Blu-Ray on...
Oscars 2015: Lady Gaga sings for 50th anniversary of 'T...
Something Wicked on DVD Mar 17...
Meryl Streep, Peter Fonda celebrate Women in Film...



Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Paramount Studios presents
The Brotherhood (1968)

"I need you, Vince. Honest to God I do. We're going to show these bananas how to operate."
- Frank (Kirk Douglas)

Review By: Rich Rosell   
Published: May 21, 2002

Stars: Kirk Douglas, Alex Cord
Other Stars: Irene Papas, Susan Strasberg, Murray Hamilton, Eduardo Ciannelli, Luther Adler
Director: Martin Ritt

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for some violence
Run Time: 01h:36m:00s
Release Date: May 14, 2002
UPC: 097360681543
Genre: crime


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B- C+C+B D-

DVD Review

If you can overlook the tough-to-swallow casting of Kirk Douglas and Alex Cord as brothers, and Italian brothers at that, then you actually might find yourself enjoying this 1968 mob thriller from director Martin Ritt (Sounder, The Great White Hope). Released just a few short years before The Godfather would seemingly reinvent the entire mafia crime genre, The Brotherhood does a pretty good job telling the story of an aging mobster caught between two very different and conflicting styles of organized crime.

Frank Ginetta (Douglas) is an old-school mob guy who would much rather things ran like they used to, in what he remembers as the good old days, before his Mafioso father was gunned down. The modern-day methods of the new world of organized crime are foreign to him, and Frank finds himself suddenly butting heads with The Board, a powerful group of mafia businessmen looking for ways to "appear legitimate." When his younger brother Vince (Cord) gets drawn into the "family" early in the film, Frank believes he has found an ally in his struggle to retain the old ways, "just like Pop." The only problem is that Vince has more of a grasp on the new ways than brother Frank does, which only serves to drive a wedge between them.

Douglas, the seasoned movie legend, chews things up nicely as a man stuck hopelessly in the past, but Cord is awkwardly bland as his open-minded brother. Most of their scenes together are excuses for Douglas (who also received producer credit) to deliver some chatty hunks of dialogue in that trademark stern-jawed way that he has, and unfortunately the guy is such a film icon that much of the time I could only see Kirk Douglas, not Frank Ginetta. The Sicilian mafia leaders, led by a wonderfully cadaverous Eduardo Ciannelli, are right out of Central Casting, and they lend an almost comic-book quality to the proceedings.

Even with the casting quirks, the Lewis John Carlino (The Mechanic, Honor Thy Father, The Great Santini) screenplay still holds up fairly well. In fact, Carlino touches on themes that films like The Godfather would more eloquently elaborate on as the era of the mob movie evolved in the 1970s. Unlike mob films of today, however, there is relatively little on-screen violence in The Brotherhood. While there isn't really any bloodshed, there is a pretty tense scene late in the film when Frank carries out a very personal hit, and it is a long, slow and torturous process.

On an unrelated note, what's with the cover art? Look at that giant closeup of Douglas; that thing would scare small children away.

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.78:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: Paramount gets good marks on the source print quality on this 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer; considering it is from 1968, there is relatively little in the way of blemishes, other than a few white specks. Colors, especially during interior shots, look fairly bright throughout. The downside is the excessive ringing and haloing that is present during just about every major scene, and it is frankly quite a distraction. I could be more more lenient on a weaker color palette if the compression issues were not as significant.

Image Transfer Grade: C+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglish, Frenchyes


Audio Transfer Review: Two mono tracks (English and French) are provided, and neither have real detriments, other than the typical fidelity limitations. Dialogue is clear and hiss-free, though the noisy Lalo Schifrin wah-wah score sounds a little harsh at times.

Serviceable and decent.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 16 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extras Review: Nothing here but 16 chapters and English subtitles.

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

It's all about family honor, both of blood and the mob, in this late 1960s crime drama. If Paramount hadn't spilled a major plot point on the back cover, I might have enjoyed this one even more, so take that as a warning. The Brotherhood tells a decent story about the old ways versus the new, and how sometimes change is a hard thing to accept.

The image transfer isn't the best, but it's recommended as a rental for mob movie fans.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, internet, netflix, documentaries, leonardo dicaprio, virunga, gorillas, jadotville, jamie dornan, horror, kids, kelly osbourne, giuliana rancic, zendaya, dreadlocks, action, star trek, sci-fi, leonard nimoy, human-alien first officer, star ship enterprise, music, kelly clarkson, brandon blackstock, terry smith, american idol winner, drama, oscars 2015, lady gaga, the sound of music, julie andrews, scarlett johansson, film, movies, oscars, comedy, sports, abc, the view, delores & jermaine, whoopi goldberg, taylor kinney, heart-shaped diamond, saturday night live 40, rachel dratch, tom hanks, alec baldwin, melissa mccarthy, billy crystal, documentary, jimmy fallon, justin timberlake, paul mccartney, paul simon, miley cyrus, kanye west, 60 minutes, bob simon, car accident, manhattan, dance competition, dancing with the stars, mark ballas, valentin chmervoskiy, witney carson, comedy central, the daily show, jon stewart, the colbert report, the nightly show with larry wilmore, john oliver, bill maher, movie, spiderman, avengers, sony pictures, amy pascal, marvel films, kevin feige

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store