Brothers (2004 film)
|Directed by||Susanne Bier|
|Produced by||Peter Aalbæk Jensen|
Sisse Graum Jørgensen
|Written by||Susanne Bier|
Anders Thomas Jensen
|Starring||Nikolaj Lie Kaas|
|Music by||Johan Söderqvist|
|Edited by||Pernille Bech Christensen|
|Distributed by||Nordisk Film|
Brothers (Danish: Brødre) is a 2004 Danish psychological thriller war film directed by Susanne Bier and written by Bier and Anders Thomas Jensen. It stars Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Connie Nielsen and Ulrich Thomsen.
A Danish army officer, Michael (Thomsen), is sent to the International Security Assistance Force operation in Afghanistan for three months. His first mission there is to find a young radar technician who had been separated from his squad some days earlier. While on the search, his helicopter is shot down and he is taken as a prisoner of war, but is reported dead to the family.
His wife Sarah (Nielsen) and younger brother Jannik (Kaas) both deeply mourn him, and that brings them closer together. They kiss once, but pass it off as grief and do not pursue the relationship.
Meanwhile, both the officer and a young technician are locked up in a warehouse, kept without food or water. After Michael shows them how to arm and disarm an anti-aircraft missile, his captors decide the technician is no longer useful and have Michael bludgeon him to death with a lead pipe in order to save his own life. Eventually he is rescued and brought back to Denmark. The guilt of what he did forces him to lie and provide false hope that the technician may still be alive.
Michael becomes unstable, spiraling down into a pit of guilt and rage, and begins to threaten and abuse his wife and tear the house apart. It finally becomes necessary for the police to intervene. Michael overreacts, pointing a policeman's pistol at the officers. With Michael in custody, Jannik helps Sarah to begin the repairs to the house.
In the car, Sarah passes a sign reading Statsfængslet (National Prison). Her visit to Michael in prison finally forces him to admit the truth about Afghanistan.
- Connie Nielsen as Sarah
- Ulrich Thomsen as Michael
- Nikolaj Lie Kaas as Jannik
- Sarah Juel Werner as Natalia (daughter)
- Rebecca Løgstrup as Camilla (daughter)
- Bent Mejding as Henning
- Solbjørg Højfeldt as Else
- Niels Olsen as Allentoft
- Paw Henriksen as Niels Peter
- Lars Hjortshøj as Preben 2
- Lars Ranthe as Preben 1
- André Babikian as Slobodan
- Lene Maria Christensen as J. Solvej
- Laura Bro as Ditte
- Henrik Koefoed as Bartender
- Tom Mannion as Captain David Ward
The film was produced by Zentropa in co-production with companies in the United Kingdom, Sweden and Norway. It received support from the Danish Film Institute, Swedish Film Institute and Nordisk Film- & TV-Fond (Nordic Film and TV Foundation). It was primarily shot on location in Copenhagen, Denmark; Almería, Spain, was used for the Afghanistan locales.
An opera entitled Brothers, based on the story of the film, was composed by Icelandic composer Daníel Bjarnason. It was premiered at the Musikhuset Aarhus in Denmark on 16 August 2017. It was commissioned by Den Jyske Opera. The libretto was written in English by Kerstin Perski; the director was Kasper Holten. To celebrate Aarhus as the European Capital of Culture 2017, three stage works – a musical, dance, and an opera all based on films by Susanne Bier – were commissioned and performed in Musikhuset.
- Ebert, Roger (19 May 2005). "Brothers Movie Review & Film Summary (2005)". Roger Ebert. Archived from the original on 13 July 2013. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- Hjort, M.; Lindqvist, U. (2016). A Companion to Nordic Cinema. Wiley Blackwell Companions to National Cinemas. Wiley. p. 449. ISBN 978-1-118-47527-0. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- Ritzenhoff, K. A.; Kazecki, J. (2014). Heroism and Gender in War Films. Palgrave Macmillan US. p. 156. ISBN 978-1-137-36072-4. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- "Brothers review". Sight and Sound. Vol. 15 no. 1–6. British Film Institute, British Institute of Adult Education. 2005. p. 45. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- "Brødre". Det Danske Filminstitut (in Danish). 1 July 2008. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- "Kulturhaupstadt Aarhus – Uraufführung der Oper Brødre" [Cultural capital Aarhus – World premiere of the opera Brødre]. Deutschlandfunk (in German). 17 August 2017. Archived from the original on 25 February 2018. Retrieved 25 February 2018.