Glenn Kenny
March 08, 1996 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Brothers McMullen

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
98 minutes
performer
Ed Burns, Jack Mulcahy, Mike McGlone
director
Ed Burns
author
Ed Burns
genre
Comedy, Romance

We gave it a C+

Just because a guy busts his hump crafting a well-intentioned, ”human” comedy-drama for little money doesn’t necessarily mean the result will be terrific. Yes, The Brothers McMullen, the story of three love-confounded brothers won top honors at the 1994 Sundance Film Festival. But all the no-budget McMullen really does is demonstrate that the romantic travails of feisty Irish Catholics from Long Island aren’t as funny as the romantic travails of Manhattan-dwelling Jewish neurotics. Writer-director-star Burns’ relationship observations fall into the heard-it-before category; what distinguishes this from big-budget Hollywood product is that it dishes up heartfelt cliches rather than crassly mass-marketed ones. And it doesn’t look nearly as good. C+

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