Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. 75
    An honest, on-the-ground documentary about the lives of Americans fighting there. It has no spin. It's not left or right.
  2. He does accomplish his main task, to take us into places civilians rarely go, and give witness to the immense challenges soldiers like his brothers face every second they’re required to be at war.
  3. 70
    It's the epitome of an embedded war report, though Rademacher's at-ease scenes with the soldiers have some of the warmth and terse humor of Ernie Pyle's, and there's some hair-raising footage of a machine-gun firefight.
  4. Made with the full cooperation of the Pentagon, Brothers at War makes the war on-screen seem eminently winnable, eminently noble. Rademacher's desire to prove himself to himself, and to his soldier brothers, may stir different reactions among different audience members. And that's as it should be.
  5. 75
    This documentary, which begins at a low key, gradually becomes intense and psychologically complicated.
  6. 50
    It’s practically a feature-length infomercial for the military.
  7. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    65
    Allowed remarkable access, presumably because of the familial connections, Rademacher comes up with compellingly unfamiliar documentary footage.
  8. 70
    Well shot but generically scored, Brothers at War has its share of potent moments, most of them with Mr. Rademacher’s family in the States.
  9. Reviewed by: Elias Sevada
    60
    Harrowing, heroic, and occasionally gripping.
  10. Reviewed by: Gary Goldstein
    60
    Rademacher's vigorous commitment to making the documentary, as well as to his large, close-knit family, deserves respect.
  11. Reviewed by: Alissa Simon
    60
    Provides some interesting perspectives but also veers dangerously close to vanity project.
  12. Reviewed by: Vadim Rizov
    50
    I can, however, object to the bathetic, misty score and the endless close-ups of American babies to remind us "what we're fighting for"--and to the filmmaker's belief that support for our troops and support for their mission are one in the same. Just because Rademacher believes his film to be "non-partisan" does not make it so.
  13. Reviewed by: Dan Zak
    50
    There are much better Iraq documentaries than this one, but Brothers at War distinguishes itself by peering out over the emotional chasm between soldiers and their families.

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