Directed by: Joe Pearlman, David Soutar
From what I remember when I was a young boy, “Bros” were the biggest band in the UK. They were always on ‘Going Live‘ with Phillip Schofield and Sarah Green on a Saturday morning. Sadly I only recall one of their songs; ‘When Will I Be Famous?’ (I’ve been told they did have other hits). It turns out the band spilt up and haven’t performed together for over a quarter of a century. Originally the band consisted of 3 members: Matt Goss, Luke Goss (twin brothers) and Craig Logan, who quit the band in 1987. So in 2016, the two brothers announced they would be playing a date at the O2 in 2017. One problem – the brothers aren’t really on talking terms and don’t exactly see eye to eye.
‘After the Screaming Stops‘ picks up with Matt and Luke in the run-up to the big reunion gig. Matt Goss is now having a very successful career as a Frank Sinatra type singer in Las Vegas and Luke Goss is now a Hollywood actor. You may have seen him in Guillermo Del Toro’s ‘Blade 2‘ and ‘Hellboy 2‘. Each brother is now living their own life. The documentary follows the brothers as they try and rehearse for the reunion show. It’s fair to say that it doesn’t go as smoothly as planned.
Having little to no knowledge of Bros doesn’t dampen the enjoyment for this rather surprising documentary. It is definitely a film of two halves which play very differently. The first half an hour or so is more like a real-life mixture of ‘Spinal Tap’, ‘Alan Partridge‘ and David Brent from ‘The Office’. Matt Goss comes out with some truly memorable quotes which I think are unintentionally funny. Sometimes the laughing seems cruel but it is unavoidable. It seems he is trying to play up to the camera, after all, he is the frontman. The second half gets a lot more serious. Finally the two brothers are in the same room and years of pent-up anger and jealousy spills out in front of the camera. There are huge arguments which come close to punch-ups, but there are also sweet, tender and heartbreaking moments.
It is clear that the brothers love each other but with years of built-up emotions it was never going to be smooth sailing. What’s great about ‘ATSS’ is that the camera never shies away from anything. It’s all caught on camera. It could have been heavily cut. Props should be given to the filmmakers Joe Pearlman and David Soutar for that but it should also be given to Matt and Luke Goss. It is a brave thing letting the world see you like this and they come off the better for it. In the end you can’t help but root for them.
If you are a Brosette then you will come out smiling but luckily for everyone else, there is a lot to get out of this. It’s not so about the music itself but the relationship of the two brothers and luckily that is enough.