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The Brothers McMullen

52 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

After their good-for-nothing father dies and their mother leaves to be with the man she really loves, brothers Jack, Barry and Patrick are left with only each other as they struggle with their own relationships. Married Jack is tempted to have an affair; Patrick isn't sure his fiancée is "the one"; and Barry can't deal with the fact that he is actually falling in love.

Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jack Mulcahy, Michael McGlone, Edward Burns, Shari Albert, Maxine Bahns
  • Directors: Edward Burns
  • Writers: Edward Burns
  • Producers: Edward Burns, Anthony Bregman, Bill Baldwin, Dick Fisher, Edward J. Burns
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), French (Unknown), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Fox Searchlight
  • DVD Release Date: October 3, 2000
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004W5U6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,307 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Brothers McMullen" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Inger Watts on November 14, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
This is a pleasant film about problems concerning love. There are three brothers who run into difficulties that they have to solve. My favourite is the second oldest brother. Barry has seen how his mother had to struggle for years with a man that she did not love. After Barry's father is dead, Barry's mother is finally able to marry the man she has always loved.
Barry's reaction to his mother's fate and also to his own relationship with his father, makes Barry afraid to form a steady relationship with the woman of his dreams.
This film touches important issues like love, committment and religion. There were many funny scenes in this film too, so it was good to sit down and watch it.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Stephen M. Bauer on July 14, 2002
Format: DVD
The Brothers McMullen is supposed to be about what it's like having grown up Irish-Catholic in America, which, in the context of this movie, is supposed to be about being sexually repressed. It's an outstanding movie that everyone should see.
The movie is about the relationship of three brothers to the women in their lives and to each other. I must warn you, this is a serious romantic comedy-there's no severed limbs, exploding buildings, or sensational car wrecks. It's a quiet movie with no action. It's also a movie you can watch more than once and still be equally engrossed.
The oldest brother is a high school basketball coach, but, oddly, he's very non-jock like. He's somewhat sensitive and a little thoughtful for crying out loud! And he doesn't drink enough beer for a coach. He is friends with another woman who has the serious hots for him, but he keeps turning her down out of respect for his marriage.
Middle brother was engaged to a Jewish girl, but it broke up due to his own moral and emotional conflicts. Later on, he then picks up an old friendship with the Irish-American girl that grew up next door. She repairs cars in the backyard, drinks beer like the guys and has big hair to remind you she's a girl. I liked her better anyway.
The youngest brother is the most likable. He hasn't been a practicing Catholic since junior high; yet, he considers himself a believer. His charismatic crudeness and way of treating woman remind me of the characters Sean Penn plays, but this guy's got better personality and looks. Both older brothers tell him he drinks too much, but I'd say he drinks just the right amount for his age and station in life!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 2, 2000
Format: DVD
I am a huge fan of romantic comedies, and I have gone on record as saying that "The Brothers McMullen" is my all time favorite. It is the story of three brothers from Long Island struggling to find meaning in their relationships while also dealing with their Catholic faith. It is written and directed by Edward Burns("Saving Private Ryan") who also plays one of the brothers. He does a fabulous job creating a movie that is insightful and entertaining. It only runs for 96 minutes, but I could have watched the story of the McMullen brothers for at least another hour. The DVD is definately one that will be added to my collection come its release in October. When looking for a sweet, character driven love story, there is nothing better then "The Brothers McMullen."
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By MarMue on July 31, 2002
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I love Ed Burns and I thought this film was good (I do like "She's the One" better) It's about 3 brothers, their lives and the reprocussions of growing up in a Catholic Irish American household in New York city.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. Berchild on January 5, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Having worked in the entertainment industry for years I have found that the idea of "story" has become passe and "flash and glam" has replaced the craft of fine moviemaking. This film has resored my faith in the art. I would like to see what the result would be if we were to give the "great" film directors of the modern cinema a couple thousand bucks to shoot a film. Chances are they would fall far short of this first effort by a very talented writer/director/actor. Please sit down, enjoy, and laugh yourself to death.
If you're interested in the filming and scripting of this (and other) Ed Burns films... check out his book "Three Screenplays." It's well worth the read. Oh, and if there are any Irish-Americans out there looking for a film to relate to... this is the one!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By rk on April 22, 2001
Format: DVD
The people who criticise the film for not having a plot or storyline miss the point of this film. We watch the Brothers McMullen struggle with morality and love. It is nice to see a film that deals with love and sex on a deeper level than just love and sex. Edward Burns has a great ear for dialogue, keeping the dialogue real-sounding and never stilted. It's too bad that as a filmmaker, he has not reprised the artistic success he had with this film.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By marble hill on August 28, 2011
Format: DVD
After a gap of nearly two decades, I serendipitously came across the movie, The Brothers McMullen. I dimmed the lights, sat down with a glass of wine, tube of Pringles and luxuriated in the preparation, for what I guessed would be a nostalgic and schmaltzy experience. What a surprise! This is a wonderful movie!

It is set in pre 9/11 New York, where nothing casts a shadow and anything is possible. Three brothers from an Irish American family are united again as young adults and despite their differences, they capture the essence of what makes blood ties so unbreakable. We expect great things from our siblings, yet when they are less than they can be, when they shatter our illusions, we forgive them and cheer them on. Because what we are essentially doing is forgiving ourselves, shouting out to the little boys and girls that we still are.

Jack, the eldest and most handsome, and let me digress here; When I watched this for the first time in 1995, I enjoyed it immensely, because I was Irish and had lived in Queens, NY. I had big hair and wore baggy shirts, but I didn't think the Brothers were so attractive. Now with the advantage of hindsight and the clarity of age, or maybe just envy at their timeless youth, I was beguiled by their perfect skin, toned physiques and of course their Irish charm (which unbelievably, Irish men in the old country have yet to perfect!). Anyway, getting back to the storyline - Jack is married to Molly, who could also have been called Jane, for her girl next-door loveliness. He is seduced by a temptress from the city and to my horror, poor Moll forgives him.....

Patrick is the youngest brother, a devout Catholic, overwhelmed by his longtime, Jewish girlfriend.
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