OPENS: Friday 12/4
In this plodding drama, Captain Sam (Tobey Maguire) goes to Afghanistan just as his bro Tommy (Jake Gyllenhaal) gets paroled. Soon, his wife Grace (Natalie Portman) gets the news that Sam was shot dead, and takes comfort in Tommy's presence. Oops! Sam was actually captured by the Taliban, and he returns home on edge and obsessed with Grace's possible infidelity. A lip gloss-wearing Portman is miscast as a suburban mom, giving the love triangle zero credibility. And though Maguire and Gyllenhaal succeed as brothers, Maguire works too hard unloading his scarred, crazy exterior -- and Gyllenhaal is tragically underutilized.
-- THELMA ADAMS