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Movie reviews: The Sapphires and My Idiot Brother

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Both these movies are comedic, and built around family dynamics.

The Sapphires poster

***½ The Sapphires (March 2013) – Theatre

Chris O’Dowd, Deborah Mailmen, Jessica Mauboy. A group of singing Australian aboriginal sisters are discovered by British talent scout who encourages them to sing R&B, and gets them a gig in Vietnam.

She says: The setting of this movie in the 60s give it a certain cool factor (oh, the fashion!) and the location of Vietnam gives it real thrills at times (oh, the bombs!). But the core is three sisters and their once-estranged cousin dealing with the legacy of racism that has left them scarred, but also able to access and convey the pain and fight in R&B music, just as their new British manager insists.

Loosely based on a true story, the movie features love stories, great musical interludes, and a lot of comedy with a good dash of drama. It’s an independent film that’s well worth seeking out.

He says: OK, now I’m glad you brought me to the movies! That was really enjoyable. I’m not sure which sister was my favorite character, but that Julie sure had quite the voice.

Our Idiot Brother movie poster

*** Our Idiot Brother (August 2011) – Rental

Paul Rudd, Zoe Deschanel, Emily Mortimer. Ned is a good guy, but his innate trust of others sometimes lands him in trouble, even jail. His sisters take turns housing him in his time of need, and find him disrupting their lives.

She says: Ned is not really an idiot, but the fact he insists on trusting other people despite getting burned does put him in contrast with his three sisters’ approach to life. This is a strong cast, and it’s fun watching them interact as Ned’s natural openness tears open information they would prefer be kept secret. It’s not a wildly inventive movie, but there are worse ways to spend your time.

He says: Entertaining enough, though some of the situations got kind of uncomfortable. (And sometimes he was a bit of an idiot.)

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