The Brothers Sun

The Brothers Sun

TV-MA

netflix

Surprisingly fun action punctuates a generally flat crime-comedy story

5.9

TV Show

United States of America
English
Action & Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Drama
2024
Highdee Kuan, Joon Lee, Justin Chien

TLDR

We know Michelle Yeoh can be everything, everywhere, all at once, but from this moment on she's going to be typecast as a fierce mother bear with dangerous combat skills (we're not complaining though).

What it's about

A timid college student learns about his family's criminal history when his estranged brother—a hardened gangster—returns from Taipei to California to protect him and his mother from escalating turf violence.

The take

Buddy comedies, especially those that pair up total opposites, are almost guaranteed to be fun at the beginning, just from the surprise factor of having these personalities clash. But a show needs more than that to sustain interest, and The Brothers Sun just doesn't fill out its characters enough beyond their respective archetypes within the first two episodes watched for this review. So far, this is a series that seems to be built around moments—in particular, the impressively choreographed fight scenes that communicate both peril and comedy—but without more substantial themes to prop itself up. It's definitely slickly made and has production values to show off, but it can't help but feel like it's just ticking boxes.

What stands out

The action sequences in The Brothers Sun don't reinvent the wheel by any means, but it really is worth noting how comedic they can be—whether they build towards a punchline or they're just not afraid to look ridiculous (e.g. a sequence involving hitmen dressed in inflatable dinosaur costumes), all while maintaining a relatively high level of violence. It's unfortunate, then, that the action so far doesn't exactly advance character or move the plot forward in a more meaningful way, given how adept the series' direction already seems to be at showing, and not just telling.

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