Big Brother Trouble

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Big Brother Trouble
Directed by Ralph Portillo
Produced by Jamie Elliott
Ralph Portillo
Written by Jeff Nimoy
Seth Walther
Starring Mario Lopez
Dick Van Patten
Bo Hopkins
Music by Steven M. Stern
Cinematography John Huneck
The Girl Next Door LLC
Distributed by Mainline Releasing
Monarch Home Video
Release date
April 21, 2000
Running time
89 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Big Brother Trouble is a 2000 American comedy film directed by Ralph Portillo. It had a limited release and grossed less than $600,000.00. It was released on video in 2003.


Sibling rivalry reaches new heights when two brothers fall for the same girl in this family comedy. Mitch Dobson (Michal Suchánek) is a 11-year-old soccer fan who doesn't get along very well with his 16-year-old brother, Sean (Shad Hart). When Police Captain Stacy (Dick Van Patten) and his family moves in next door, Mitch immediately falls for his 16-year-old daughter, Gwen (Lindsey Brooke). Gwen, however, is a lot more interested in Sean, and when Sean and Gwen start dating, Mitch and his friends begin scheming to find a way to put an end to their budding romance.

Mitch Dobson and his two friends Josh and Peter are playing soccer in his front yard while Mitch's big brother Sean is also playing at a soccer game with his high school team. While playing, Mitch accidentally kicks the ball too hard, causing it to break a lamp sitting with the moving boxes next door. Mitch is reprimanded by the old man (Police Captain Stacey) who owns the lamp, telling Mitch he owes him two hundred, but Sean comes to the rescue, offering to pay for it. Captain Stacey is happy that Sean is taking the matter responsibly into his own hands and tells Mitch he wishes he were more like his big brother, but Mitch is too busy staring at the Captain's beautiful daughter Gwen.

While swimming with Josh and Peter later, Mitch hears a scream from next door and finds Gwen swimming. He fantasizes about being with her, but suddenly Captain Stacey catches the boys snooping and chases them off. Gwen finds them after he's left, and Mitch offers to give her a tour of his house later. But Sean arrives suddenly, offering to have Gwen over for lunch, and she obviously seems more comfortable with Sean's offer than Mitch's. Mitch, furious, schemes to keep Sean out of the way. He lures and traps Sean in the barn out back just before Gwen arrives, and he lets her into the house while Sean is pounding and yelling for him in the backyard. Gwen hears him and rescues him, but the lunch Sean is cooking for Gwen burns in the oven. Gwen is flattered that he made her a meal, and he offers to take her out for pizza to make up for the chicken Mitch ruined. As they head down a back road toward town, Mitch and his friends tail them, but the sounds from their walkie-talkies terrifies Mitch and Josh, who run screaming out of the trees, revealing themselves to Gwen and Sean.

Mitch asks his father for advice on girls, and Robert tells him that every girl is different, although most of them appreciate romance, such as being taken out on dates. He praises Sean on how he is treating Gwen, and tells Mitch that when Sean finally raises enough money to buy the Mustang he's been watching, he'll be able to take Gwen out more often. Mitch realizes Sean's looking for a job to raise the last of that money he needs, plus the two hundred for Captain Stacey's lamp. To keep him from getting the money, Mitch jeopardizes Sean's opportunities by calling various locations around town with a disguised voice, saying different terrible things about him to keep employers from hiring him. However, Mitch slips up, and Sean ends up successfully landing a job at Oddo's Donut Shop.

Sean finds Gwen at the coffee house where she works, telling her the good news that he has a job and will be getting his car soon. Gwen becomes excited, and as her shift ends, she sings a song for Sean, which she is well known for at her workplace. Mitch happens upon the shop while she is singing and becomes entranced, but is spotted embarrassingly and leaves. Over the next few days he tries different ways to show Gwen he's a great guy and gain her interest, but nothing works.

During his next soccer practice, Sean asks his coach if he can leave a bit early each day for work, which the coach reluctantly agrees to. Mitch catches Gwen leaving after Sean has taken off for his job, and Gwen finally manages to let Mitch down gently about her relationship with his brother. Upset and misunderstanding, Mitch tells her he hates her and runs away.

The soccer coach shows up at Oddo's Donut Shop that evening, and asks Oddo if he could allow Sean to come in late to work, so he won't have to leave practice early anymore. He stresses how important it is that Sean help the team win the next two games, because he is the team's best player, and the school's budget cuts will remove the soccer team if they don't win the championship by beating the Eastern and the Tigers. Sean's boss Oddo grudgingly agrees, but he knows he will lose money if Sean cannot come in early enough to make deliveries. To compensate, he and his two gambling buddies form a point-shaving scheme in which Sean will win the game by less than three points. Oddo plans to bet high numbers on this exact eventuality to earn big. He asks Sean to win the game this way, but he speaks vaguely to keep Sean from realizing it's an illegal gambling scheme. To lure Sean in, he gives Sean the two hundred to pay for Captain Stacey's lamp, and promises Sean the final thousand he needs for the Mustang if he wins the game according to Oddo's instructions. Sean's intuition warns him, and he is visibly uncomfortable, but ends up accepting, as he decides that Oddo seems to know more about money than he does.

When he tells Gwen later, she becomes nervous and tells him not to participate in the scheme. Sean argues that it can't be illegal, and the two get into a fight, leading to Sean storming out. One of Oddo's buddies, secretly hanging out at the coffee house and having heard the entire conversation, warns Oddo that Sean's girlfriend may be going to the police, and Oddo orders both his men to kidnap her until after Sean's game. But Sean has been considering Gwen's words, and he makes up his mind to not be a part of Oddo's scheme. When he tells Oddo, Oddo becomes angry and shows Sean Gwen, who is tied and taped in the back of the delivery truck. Sean, frightened, backs down and agrees to win the game the way Oddo specified to keep him from hurting Gwen. Oddo considers, but decides it's too risky to continue with his plan. He calls his competitor and changes the terms of the bet to Sean's team losing, then throws Sean into the truck with Gwen.

Josh and Peter, having been close by, see this happen, and they run to tell Mitch. The three of them get to the shop, but Oddo's men are guarding the truck. Josh and Peter lure them away, and Mitch climbs into the back of the truck to save Sean and Gwen, but their ropes are too tight. When Josh and Peter run back, they try to help, but to no avail. Oddo drives off with all the kids in the back. They start banging at the walls, causing Oddo to stop and investigate. Mitch, Josh and Peter sneak out of the back as Oddo reaches the delivery door, and they jump into the front of the truck and take off with Oddo running after them. The boys head for the park, driving erratically, but are blocked off by Oddo's two buddies again on a detour. Josh sprays one of them with his inhaler, startling them, and pushes them away from the open window, letting them escape again.

As they reach the park, Sean and Gwen, having finished untying the ropes Mitch and his friends loosened, break free from the truck. Sean immediately rushes to the field to finish the game his team is losing, and he scores them to victory. Oddo arrives at the field with his buddies, just in time to see that he has lost the bet. Gwen sees them and tells her father, and the enraged captain sends everyone on the field after the kidnappers, who are quickly caught.

Sean and Gwen thank the boys, and Mitch apologizes to Gwen for his outburst. Gwen introduces Mitch, Josh and Peter to her young cousin Candace and her two friends, who take an interest in the boys and walk off with them. Mitch is obvious infatuated with Candace, forgetting his feelings for Gwen, and the film ends with the two kids walking off the field together.



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