Bloodbrothers (1978 film)

Bloodbrothers is a 1978 coming-of-age film directed by Robert Mulligan. It stars Richard Gere, Paul Sorvino, Tony Lo Bianco and Marilu Henner and was based on the novel of the same title by Richard Price. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Directed byRobert Mulligan
Produced byStephen J. Friedman
Screenplay byWalter Newman
Based onBloodbrothers
by Richard Price
StarringPaul Sorvino
Tony Lo Bianco
Richard Gere
Lelia Goldoni
Yvonne Wilder
Marilu Henner
Kenneth McMillan
Music byElmer Bernstein
CinematographyRobert L. Surtees
Edited bySheldon Kahn
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
October 6, 1978 (1978-10-06)
Running time
116 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$4 million


Set in a working-class Bronx community, it tells the story of the De Coco family, a family of construction workers. Thomas is the head of the family with two sons, but one, Stony (Richard Gere) wants to be a teacher, not a construction worker. Then he accepts a job as a recreational assistant at a children's ward. Immediately, bitter divisions begin to surface.



The movie opened to positive reviews, and though it would be forgotten about in later years, it was liked for the ensemble cast. As one of the De Coco sons, Richard Gere was especially praised. The film also introduced Marilu Henner, who would later star on the TV show Taxi.

Ryan McDonald of Shameless Self Expression said: "This 1978 Robert Mulligan tale about a seriously dysfunctional Italian-American family is too broadly played, stereotyped, and overly familiar... This is all very shouty and somewhat overbearing stuff for a story that isn’t all that memorable to begin with. ... Tony Lo Bianco and especially an unrestrained Lelia Goldoni are the worst offenders. Lo Bianco, often typecast as (an) Italian-American hood, gives us a stereotype of Italian-American machismo, misogyny, occasional brutality, and just general hamminess. Occasionally there seems to be a real character in there, but largely it’s just too much of a ‘performance’... But at least he has his moments, which cannot be said for the ghastly Goldoni, whose shrieking, mugging, wailing ... coupled with a pathetic, basically psychotic character derail the film. ... The most enjoyable work comes from Paul Sorvino, Marilu Henner, and Kenneth McMillan..." [1]



  1. Ryan McDonald, "Bloodbrothers" Review Sept. 20, 2012
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