The documentary big screen movie “Brothers At War” is an intimate portrait of an American family during a turbulent time. Jake Rademacher sets out to understand the experience, sacrifice, and motivation of his two brothers serving in Iraq. The film follows Jake’s exploits as he risks everything—including his life—to tell his brothers’ story. Often humorous, but sometimes downright lethal, “Brothers At War” is a remarkable journey where Jake embeds with four combat units in Iraq. Unprecedented access to US and Iraqi combat units take him behind the camouflage curtain with secret reconnaissance troops on the Syrian border, into sniper “hide sites” in the Sunni Triangle, through raging machine gun battles with the Iraqi Army. Ultimately, the film follows his brothers home where separations and life-threatening work ripple through their parents, siblings, wives, and children. “Brothers At War” is a rare look at the bonds and service of our soldiers on the frontlines and the profound effects their service has on the loved ones they leave behind.
“The film takes place in the darkest hours of the insurgency, before the successful Surge changed US fortunes,” Rademacher says. From Army Intelligence units on secret reconnaissance missions near the Syrian border, to a ‘hide site’ of National Guard snipers, to the first Iraqi unit—trained and led by US Marines—to receive responsibility for its own battle space, the film gives unparalleled access to the daily lives of men and women in war.”
Rademacher’s war covers a wide cast of characters:
Capt. Isaac Rademacher, a decorated West Point graduate, serving his second tour in Iraq, third in a war zone, welcomes his brother, Jake, to his Army unit’s headquarters in Iraq.
Sgt. Joe Rademacher, a Ranger and Army sniper who served with Isaac in Iraq, is skeptical of Jake’s attempts to understand his struggles.
Sgt. Edward Allier, a tough Marine tasked with training Iraqi soldiers, pushes them, struggles with them, and ultimately cheers their successes.
Cpl. Frank McCann, a National Guard sniper team leader, wrestles with his team as they learn of the death of a comrade and then leads them on a dangerous mission into a sniper a “hide site” in the Sunni Triangle.
Sgt. Ben Fischer, a Recon paratrooper, stands on top of his Humvee reconning the Syrian border while wrestling with his reenlistment decision.
Ali, an Iraqi translator whose brother was murdered by insurgents because of Ali’s work with an American unit, provides a tour of Kurdistan and insight into why he continues to fight on the American’s side.