6.7/10
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40 user 24 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)

Opening Weekend USA:

$67,867, 28 October 1984

Gross USA:

$3,700,000
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

Filmed in March 1984. See more »

Goofs

At the end of the credits, it is written that the story, all names, characters and incidents portrayed in the film are "ficitious." See more »

Quotes

Man In Black: [sitting at the bar] Beer.
Odell: What kind?
Man In Black: Draft.
Man In Black: On the rocks.
See more »


Soundtracks

Pussy I Cocky I Water
Sung by Lee 'Scratch' Perry (as Lee "Scratch" Perry)
By Lee 'Scratch' Perry (as Lee "Scratch" Perry)
Happy Valley Music/BMI
Courtesy of Heartbeat Records
From the album "Mystic Miracle Star" (1982)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Strange and unique quiet drama...
6 June 2007 | by dwpollarSee all my reviews

1st watched 6/6/2007 - 7 out of 10(Dir-John Sayles): Strange and unique quiet drama about a man who lands on earth as an escapee from another planet where he was apparently a slave. Joe Morton, as this brother from the other planet has no dialogue but effectively portrays a true illegal alien. He really is a frail being who just wants to do good and be needed. He is being hunted by what appears to be his owners but he affects everyone he comes across in such a positive way that they get behind him 100% and keep these thugs from getting him. He eventually earns his money by fixing things with his otherworldly powers(once he realizes that stealing isn't right) and even gets to the point of hunting down a drug dealer in Harlem who has caused the demise of a young one in the neighborhood. This character is probably the most likable alien that has ever been put on the screen(next to maybe E.T.) and it's definitely a departure from most films. The low production value is certainly evident but the character and the storyline keeps you interested and rooting for this unlikely hero from another planet. These were the type of quiet independent movies that were made in the 80's when it was truly "seen" that the budget was low, but the makers only cared about creating a worthwhile project and John Sayles definitely did that with this one. This 80's relic is not to be missed by a true cinemaphile or anyone who wants to see the benefits of good deeds even if it's coming from someone with feet a little different than ours.


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