UK 1999

Reviewed by Jamie Graham


Our synopses give away the plot in full, including surprise twists.

Heathrow airport, the present. Six young friends - Matt, Chris, Ben, Julian, Joseph and Victor - convene for a week's holiday on the Greek island of Paros. There, they meet another friend, Alex, and make for the beach. At night they go out clubbing and try unsuccessfully to chat up women.

They spend the second day recovering but go out clubbing again that night: Julian and Alex pick up two women; Ben dances intimately with a transvestite. The next two days are spent relaxing on the beach; on the fifth day, the friends attend a beach party where Victor is rejected as too old by a woman he's trying to chat up. Matt, meanwhile, meets Anna, an Italian inhabitant of Paros who's recently broken up with her boyfriend. The next day they consummate their romance. Elsewhere, Chris is arrested for attempting to hit a woman. On the last day of the holiday, Joseph arranges Chris' bail; Chris joins the lads as they head for their ferry home. Alex stays with Anna.


Just as last year's Go and Human Traffic saw cinema finally catch up with rave culture, Brothers is a belated attempt by film-makers to come to terms with another longstanding youth phenomenon, the 18-30 package holiday. Featuring the hedonistic activities of seven young men on holiday on the Greek island of Paros, debut director Martin Dunkerton's film is less a coherent narrative than a kinked chain of loosely related vignettes. This unfocused, episodic structure might be a clever attempt to reflect the hazy, drunken outlook of Brothers' vacationing protagonists. But Dunkerton's elliptical, diary-like approach also brings to mind such recent television documentaries as Greece Uncovered and Ibiza Uncovered, late-night programmes that seem to delight in the boorish behaviour of their real-life subjects. At first, the comparison seems justified. No sooner have the lads arrived in Paros than they head for the beach to gawk at topless women. Then it's back to their rooms as they prepare for a blurry night of drinking and pumping dance music, both staples of the current fly-on-the-chalet-wall documentary.

Dunkerton does at least grant his lead characters distinct, albeit lightly sketched personalities (something that can't be said of the largely anonymous subjects of Greece Uncovered and the like). One of the film's storylines sees Matt embark on a tender romance with an Italian girl; Ben meanwhile has an unexpected gay fling; and the group are given to quoting poetry and philosophy, although the leap from such crass lines "Did I ever tell you I'm the proud father of seven abortions?" to those which flaunt a casual knowledge of Nietzsche is improbable, to say the least.

Dunkerton also makes a spirited, albeit unsuccessful, attempt to contextualise the behaviour of his laddish heroes. One character asks how he can be held responsible for his misdemeanours when society hands him the Bible wrapped in a copy of the Sun. As if to underscore the idea that these young men are lost souls, Dunkerton peppers his movie with religious motifs - a woman clutching a crucifix rounds on a predatory male , while a beach party concludes with the surreal sight of a transvestite adorned in angel wings drifting through the crowd.

But the themes of spiritual bankruptcy and male dislocation ring resoundingly hollow in a film that so revels in its characters' antics. The scenes of clubbing and drinking thrum with a gleeful energy, buoyed by a mighty dance compilation soundtrack. The soul-searching interludes, meanwhile, reek of nothing more than self-pity. After all, it's hard to extend sympathy towards characters who happily sniff each others' fingers as proof of sexual conquest.


Martin Dunkerton
Martin Dunkerton
Joanna Garvin
Martin Dunkerton
Nick Valentine
Director of Photography
Richard Terry
John Grover
Production Designer
Conrad Butlin
Julian Stewart Lindsey
©Brothers Films Ltd.
Production Company
A Brothers Films production
Executive Producer
Julian Dunkerton
Associate Producers
Tania Sayner
Simon Barton
Terry Painter
Mike Dey
Lella Dey
Mark Bloom
Ronald Bill
Hans-Peter Wurmli Jons
David Garvin
John Pickard
David Fairthorn
Mo Fairthorn
Justin Brett
Adam Oates
Joe Dimond-Brown
Katherine Stephens
Lynda Hardy
Tim Hardy
Diane Savory
Ivor Dunkerton
Susie Dunkerton
Mark Myatt
Paddy Myatt
Peter Carney
Sue Carney
Richard Draper
Christine Marlow
Mervyn Daniel
Alex Hadden
Daniel Greaves
Andy Wilson
H.R. John
John Grover
Berny Wickramasinghe
Lianne Lemmon
Layna Clark
Paul Kearney
Annie Kearney
David Kearney
Sheila Kearney
Fred Little
Gill Little
Jason Little
John Kingston
Gary Kingston
Steve Harcup
Mrs E.B. Lamplough
Susie Lamplough
Simon Greaves
James Richards
Jason Archer
Nathan Bliss
Simon Kirby
Nikki Steele
Chris Charnock
Ralph Saint-Rose
Fin Wild
Tom Low
Road & Go Vicinity
Phil Dimond-Brown
Graham Carr
Simon Price
Production Executive
Ed Harper
UK Production
Yasmin Keshmiri
Production Manager
Victoria King-Voreadis
Location Consultant
Dylan Hawkins
Creative Consultant
Ralph Saint-Rose
Assistant Directors
John Pickard
Yasmin Keshmiri
Kris Landin
Suzanna Shaw
John Pickard
Script Supervisor
Alice Peterson
Nick Valentine
Julie Dunne
Screenplay Additional Material
Julian Dunkerton
Michael Bradley
Ralph Saint-Rose
Steve Pearmaine
Monica Kaplan
Camera Operator
Richard Terry
UK Steadicam Operator
John Taylor
Digital Effects/Opticals
Craig Chandler
Make-up/Hair Design/Wardrobe Mistress
Jane Kemlo
Titles Designer
Janice Mordue
Titles Opticals
General Screen Enterprises
Featured Musicians
Zacharia Hajishacalli
Roberto Manes
Sagat Guirey
Ralph Saint-Rose
Ida Olsson
"Song 2" - Blur; "Whatever Turns U On", "It Was You" - Freeloader; "Gangster Trippin'" - Fatboy Slim, features a sample of "Beatbox Wash" - The Dust Junkys, & a sample of "Endtropy" - DJ Shadow; "Trippin on Sunshine" - Pizzaman; "The Rockafeller Skank" - Fatboy Slim, contains a sample of "Sliced Tomatoes" - Dust Brothers, & a sample of "Beat Girl" - The John Barry Seven; "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" - N-Trance; "Tubthumping" - Chumbawamba; "Sugarcane" - Studio 2; "Redemption" - Slowbound; "Peace & Joy" - Soundstation; "French Kiss" - Lil' Louis; "On a Good Day" - The Harbingers; "Sleepyhead" - Moke; "Dreaming (Percussion mix)" - Ruff Driverz presents Arrola; "Reach Out and Touch Me" - Gomera; "Sacred" - Medecine Drum featuring Neera; "You Should Be..." - Blockster; "Disco Cop (Original Climax edit)" - Blue Adonis, contains elements from "ich bin wie du" - Marianne Rosenberg; "Encore une fois (Future Breeze)" - Sash!; "Mikon U.S." - Sons of Shaft
Alan O'Duffy
Re-recording Mixer
Nic Le Messurier
Sound Editor
Simon Price
Dialogue Editor
Hugo Middleton
ADR/Foley Mixer
Sandy Buchanan
Stan Fiferman
Andie Derrick
Justin Brett
Matt 'Mystic Matey' Davidson
Daren Jacobs
Chris 'Beercan' Sullivan
Daniel Fredenburgh
Julian 'The King' Davidson
Rebecca Cardinale
Anna Stefanos
Nick Valentine
Alex 'Driftwood' Webb
Fin Wild
Victor 'Tarzan' Newson
Leigh Tapper
Joseph 'Fats Joey' Richards
Stephen Maggio
Ben 'Wildman' Urqhuart
Crystal Shepherd Cross
Mike Barret
Ben's brother
Jenifer Barnes
Ben's mother
Steven Booth
Ben's father
Evie the Dog
Evie the dog
Suzanna Shaw
Victor's wife
Nicola Baker
Victor's child
David Garvin
London cab driver
Ida Olsson
Christina Anderson
Olivia Quinn
Spider Girl
Maria Mourlas
Joanna Garvin
girl on lilo
Hillevi Richter
Sylvia Olsson
Alma Fridell
Anna van der Vliet
Louise Vitell
Emmanora Lastbom
Ellie Kosh
Ralph Saint-Rose
Jane Kemlo
Stewart Thompson
Paraskevi Tsandanis
Greek grandmother
Yannis Spiridogiannakis
Anna's boss
Julian Dunkerton
Scandi Melon-Head
Themis Yorgaros
Alice Peterson
Sun Sun
Alice Tempervey
Suzy Kewer
Sansan Fibich-Kafri
girl in red dress
Louise Barth
Greek boy
Lucy Kirke
Delphini beach waitress
Dimitris Yorgaros
deputy chief of police
Angela El-Zeand
daughter of chief of police
Elena Lyberi
Greek friend
Manolis Kondogeorgis
Nikos Papadakis
Jiannis Voreadis
Navsika Makraki
Greek musicians
Martin Dunkerton
naked film director
Paradise Films Limited
8,805 feet
97 minutes 50 seconds
Dolby Digital
In Colour
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Last Updated: 20 Dec 2011