The Brothers Bloom (2009)

Genre(s): Comedy / Crime / Drama
Summit Entertainment || PG13 - 113 minutes - $29.99 || September 29, 2009
Reviewer: Tyler Thomas || Posted On: 2009-10-05

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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.

.:: A U D I O ::.

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Director: Rian Johnson
Writer(s): Rian Johnson (written by)
Cast: Rachel Weisz, Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo, Rinko Kikuchi

Theatrical Release Date: May 15, 2009

Supplemental Material:
  • Feature Commentary
  • 2 Featurettes
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Image Gallery

Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (2.40)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

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.::THE FILM::.

I vaguely remember seeing previews for The Brothers Bloom months ago before it came out when I went to the theaters and thought to myself ďwow this looks like a good film.Ē The flick tanked at the box-office when it was released, and quietly went away like an owl when the sun comes up a few weeks later. I wondered how a film could bomb with the cast of Brody, Ruffalo, and Weisz attached to it. Then I saw the movie, and realized just how it could.

Bloom (Adrien Brody) and Stephen (Mark Ruffalo) are two conmen who, well for lack of better words or terms, con people out of things in their lives. They started out young as kids, and growing up they learned more and more about how to get what they want. After setting up a friend of theirs to shoot Bloom, they celebrate their accomplishment at the local bar. This was done with Bang Bangís (Rinko Kikuchi) help to manipulate the victim, even though she only speaks a handful of words in the English language. The next day Bloom and Stephen talk about quitting the job and Bloom wants an actual life with someone.

Months later, Bloom and Stephen decide to make one last con in an attempt to give Bloom what he really wants in life. Penelope (Rachel Weisz) is the daughter of an oil-tycoon and is incredibly rich. I guess you can see where this is going, as the two brothers decide to con her out of the money or maybe even develop a relationship for her if thatís what Bloom wants. While driving sometime later, Penelope has an accident that is staged by the gang in an attempt to win her over. The plan is for Bloom to ride his bicycle into her car and overshoot it, which works, and the two hit it off from there. The rest of the movie deals more with the Russian Mob, and other various things that happen between Penelope and Bloom that I didnít really care for. Thereís some humor thrown in for good measure once in a great while, but the film tries to be too serious when the concept of conning someone out of money is supposed to be somewhat funny.

The problems with this film are too numerous to mention, but for the sake of it Iíll name just a few. First off, the pacing of this movie is awful. It takes way too long for it to get the slightest bit interesting, and for me, that didnít happen until the credits rolled. Despite the cast being some of my favorite actors, they just arenít entertaining in their roles as cons. Second, the flick is too long for its own good. After about an hour or so I found myself dozing off due to lack of anything going on in the movie. Finally, the ending is so stupid that it made no sense what so ever. The movie takes a turn for the worse later on and it was one that I didnít see coming, but in all honesty I didnít care enough to.

Itís really hard for me to hate movies this much, but itís possible. The story is just so ridiculous that these two brothers could con so many people out of money or whatever and not get caught throughout the years is just too unbelievable. The other problem is the jump in time that happens multiple times throughout. There just wasnít enough substance for me to care long enough about the characters or the film itself to make me want to listen and try to develop a relationship to bond with the characters. The conflict in the film, which doesnít happen until late in the movie, is one of those thrown together conflicts that didnít mesh well with me.

There was already a film about conning people out of money years ago that was way better. I canít remember the title, but that one dude from Titanic was in it. It was a good movie, and better than this. Cheaper too, so go rent that instead.


Commentary by Rian Johnson and Ram Bergman: Johnson and Bergman discuss many things in this movie, especially dealing with the character of Penelope who made the film in their eyes. The director takes charge on this track, as Bergman doesnít spend that much time talking as the track progresses. Iíd recommend passing on this track though, since having to watch the film twice may be too painful for some.

From Sketch to Celluloid (12 minutes): Johnson gives you his drawings for his idea from the film, and then you get to see how it turned out. Unless you are majoring in arts or care about how a movie makes it from a drawing to the big screen, you can pass.

Behind the Scenes (16 minutes): This is your basic making of feature that lets you see how some of the scenes are setup and made. Unlike most of these that I watch, this one doesnít really have any interviews of any nature to make it interesting, so you can skip this as well.

Deleted Scenes (32 minutes): There are a ton of scenes available for you to see, and Johnson talks about why they didnít make it into the movie. I highly recommend if you found the film entertaining in the slightest to check this out when you have the free time, as though this is pretty long.

Finally, thereís an Image Gallery for you to view if you so choose to.


Colors are rather awash in this flick, as they appear dark and dreary for the duration of the movie. Thereís rarely a bright scene capable of being described, even when the sun is out it still appears slightly overcast. Flesh tones look appropriate, but the dark and bright levels really are the biggest issues. Whites also look drowned out, especially when two of the same shades of white are next to each other I was still able to see a distinct difference between the two for whatever reason. Grain wasnít much of an issue, which is a plus, but the contrast levels being so far off just made me hate the transfer too much.

The Dolby Digital 5.1 track isnít the best either, as it sports mediocre levels of dialogue and surround usage. In fact, I only recall my surround speakers going off a few times, and one of those was right at the start of the film and afterwards it was sparingly. This is a dialogue centered film, and as such, isnít going to be great for your ears. I struggled to hear dialogue throughout, as the levels constantly changed on me and I had to twiddle the volume multiple times. This track, along with the transfer, leaves much to be desired.


The Brothers Bloom was a box-office flop, and thereís a good reason why: itís just not fun. Brody and Ruffalo are completely miscast in their respective roles, and Weisz isnít alluring or funny either. The technical package is decent but the only special feature even worth bothering with is the deleted scenes portion. Oddly enough though, as of this writing, I canít find anywhere you can buy this DVD at. No online store is carrying it and no retail store either. Regardless though, these are brothers you may want to avoid raising all together and save yourself the disappointment of watching a terrible flick.