The Movie Binge

Review: Brothers of the Head


This movie is about punk the same way that Velvet Goldmine was about glam, tangentially, as it explores the dynamic between two pretty young men and the world around them. This is the punk version. It's all about rejection. Yeah, rejection of the world that rejected them, because Tom and Barry Howe are freaks, conjoined twins and you'll never understand their tortured genius.

Starts out promisingly enough as Tom and Barry Howe are sold to a rich entrepreneur who wants to cash in on their freakiness. He doesn't count on them getting caught in the zeitgeist of the times and turning out raw angsty music that catches the imaginations of the youngsters and not the oldsters. I was hoping for a geek scene, with some chickens, but mainly its rock and roll. Indeed there is a whole lot of rocking in this movie. Almost too much, but it seems pretty right on, and the crowds present have worked themselves into a proper that works.

The faux-documentary feels like a cheap gimmick. Whenever a bit of exposition is needed, cut to a crusty old hasbeen who recounts how this was that way and that was this way. There is also a weak subplot with a possible third brother, dead at birth, possibly within Barry. And that's what makes him so nuts. Finally, while the rise of the brothers is documented well, their fall is given a bit of the short shrift, leaving us, the crusty old saps, their exposition and headscratching.

I felt it was strange that so much of the film is 1975, and young revolt, and no other acts at the time are namechecked or cited. Like the bros created punk in a vacuum.

All in all, the flick was a decent and a worthy effort, but save your ten dollars.