6.7/10
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40 user 25 critic

The Brother from Another Planet (1984)

A mute alien with the appearance of a black human is chased by outer-space bounty hunters through the streets of Harlem.

Director:

John Sayles

Writer:

John Sayles
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Morton ... The Brother
Rosanna Carter Rosanna Carter ... West Indian Woman
Ray Ramirez Ray Ramirez ... Hispanic Man
Yves Rene Yves Rene ... Haitian Man
Peter Richardson Peter Richardson ... Islamic Man
Ginny Yang Ginny Yang ... Korean Shopkeeper
Daryl Edwards ... Fly
Steve James ... Odell
Leonard Jackson ... Smokey
Bill Cobbs ... Walter
Maggie Renzi Maggie Renzi ... Noreen
Olga Merediz ... Noreen's Client
Tom Wright ... Sam
Minnie Gentry Minnie Gentry ... Mrs. Brown
Renn Woods ... Bernice (as Ren Woods)
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Storyline

The Brother is an alien who has crash-landed on Earth, in New York City. While mute, strongly empathic, and able to fix things, he resembles a Black man with strange feet. His attempt to make a place for himself in Harlem is an allegory for the immigrant experience in the United States. Meanwhile, two bounty hunters from the Brother's home planet arrive and try to capture him. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

This illegal alien chose the New York streets over the men in black. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some drug content and brief nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

8 November 1984 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Typ vom anderen Stern See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$350,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$3,677,209

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,677,209
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Sayles has said that a number of the people in the crew, including some of the black members, had never been to Harlem prior to this production. See more »

Goofs

When the Brother is stealing a car, a crew member's reflection is visible in the car's window. See more »

Quotes

Card Trickster: I have another magic trick for you. Wanna see me make all the white people disappear?
Subway Public Address Announcer: Fifty-Ninth Street, Columbus Circle; 125th Street next. This an Uptown A Express going to 207. Change for the AA local across the platform, the D, or the upper level, change for the number 1 Broadway trains.
Card Trickster: See, what'd I tell ya?
Subway Public Address Announcer: Uptown A, 125th street, next.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in QI: Gothic (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Yomutha
Sung by Jeff Anderson
By Jeff Southworth and Martin Brody
Sweet Melodies Publishing/ASCAP
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Now Here Is Something Different!
17 February 2008 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

Can you say "different?" Have often do you see a movie in which the lead character never utters one word?

That's the case here, a unique story of an alien who crashes near Harlem, a famous black neighborhood in New York City. The alien is a black man, so he fits in despite not being able to speak! He's just looked upon as another "brother," as the title indicates.

Two aliens come after him - white guys, naturally. In the Liberal world of films, white people are bad and black people are good 99 percent of the time.....at least when there is a contrast between the two. Writer-director John Sayles is a prime example of this type of racist thinking. But he wrote a fun film here, I have to give him that.

Even though some of the scenes make absolutely no sense, it's an entertaining movie start- to-finish. Joe Morton plays the sympathetic alien with three toes and strange nails. You have to root for him because he's portrayed as such an innocent, harmless creature.

The best part of the film is the humor, some subtle, some not-so-subtle. The guys in the neighborhood bar where the alien hangs out brought the biggest laughs.

I find this a lot of fun to watch every three or four years.


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