Over the past several years there have been a lot of documentaries about the impacts of religions and cults on the people who were once members. And while they’re often seen through the lens of their impact on the person’s life, they don’t usually show the supposed benefits the members had while they were a part of the group.
In the new documentary, Brother’s Broken, audience members are going to get a rare look at the power of Scientology not only on the Levin brothers but their family and their career as well. And although the movie may appeal to fans of the music of the brothers, the bigger draw to this documentary may be their connection to Scientology and how they’re now speaking out.
Brother’s Broken follows the life of both Geoff and Robbie Levin, musicians who were part of the band People in the 1960s. And while their band had a hit song, their careers took a quick rise and changed directions once they became part of the Church of Scientology. The connections they made within the church or that were handed to them during their time there helped them meet major artists of the time and priceless opportunities were literally handed to them.
Documentaries that often focus on the impact of cults and extreme religions like Scientology often only cover the negative impacts it has on the lives of the members. But in an interesting twist, Brother’s Broken seems to highlight some of the good that it had in their lives as well. As each brother decides to leave, however, the documentary takes on the more noticeable narrative and tone that the church was a negative impact on their lives.
There is no doubt that Scientology has a hold on its members, and even Brother’s Broken shows how it can separate families completely by not allowing them to communicate if someone has left the church. But the documentary does seem to show that the church seemed to have a positive impact on their careers as well, just as long as they were members. It does, however, show how quickly all that good is taken away if you choose to leave or speak against the church.
Brothers Broken is set for its “U.S. Premiere” at Cinequest Film Festival on Sunday, August 20 (Hammer Theatre Center) and Saturday, August 26 (Mt. View ShowPlace ICON Theatre & Kitchen) in San Jose and Mountain View, California. Although it has a limited release currently, the documentary is going to be very interesting when it comes to anyone who is passionate about music or wants a bit of an inside look at the impact of Scientology on a family or even a career. The movie is really eye-opening and gives you an inside look at a religion that you may not be able to get otherwise. While it seems to be a passion project for the brothers, and even an olive branch out to their children, it will be interesting to see the response from the church and others within their circle at its release.
About Brother’s Broken
A hero’s journey tracing two brothers who started the one-hit wonder ’60s band PEOPLE!, the new full-length documentary, Brothers Broken, spotlights how two boomers compromised their acclaimed music careers to join Scientology, which in turn nearly destroyed their lives. Rock ‘n’ roll brothers Geoff Levin and Robbie Levin suffered almost 50 years of Scientology trauma. Brothers Broken chronicles the devastating effects the cult had on their band, their personal lives and their families while featuring their rise to fame with PEOPLE!’s hit 1968 single “I Love You” (Capitol Records), then decades of brainwashing, and ultimate redemption. Brothers Broken is set for its “U.S. Premiere” at Cinequest Film Festival (LINK) on Sunday, August 20 (Hammer Theatre Center) and Saturday, August 26 (Mt. View ShowPlace ICON Theatre & Kitchen) in San Jose and Mountain View, California.