This is a very strange film to watch, but easy to do so despite the fact that the plot is only added to near the end of the film with the men in black. It's no masterpiece at all, not even on a low budget standard, but one thing that brings above a lot of other films is a great performance by Joe Morton as The Brother, not an easy role to do, but his mute performance is pulled off so charismatically, that we can't help but be drawn into to The Brother's adventures. The film is at times very witty, very clever and very charming. John Sayles (writer/director) did well at adding in just enough subtle comedy. Most of the way through, the film is not really a science fiction film, it just happens to contain an alien. If I were to hazard a guess at how Sayles came up with the idea of The Brother From Another Planet, I would assume he started with the idea of; what if everything was kind of new and unfamiliar to you, as if you were born again, he probably started with that and worked from there to form this delightful film. One down side is the ending, because; as I mentioned before, 80% of the film is not really science fiction like, but the ending is very much science fiction, but it doesn't spoil the picture too much.
I give this gem a firm 8/10.