Box art for Brokeback Mountain

Brokeback Mountain

drama, romance

Brokeback Mountain is a sweeping epic that explores the lives of two young men, a ranch hand and a rodeo cowboy, who meet in the summer of 1963 and unexpectedly forge a lifelong connection. The complications, joys and heartbreak they experience provide a

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

PAUSE for kids age 16
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Mature, emotionally complex film isn't for kids.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this is a mature, emotionally complicated film that isn't appropriate for kids. The movie is focused on a lifelong relationship between two male cowboys. Their meeting and discovery of mutual desire at film's start is pictured in a rough-seeming sex scene (with fairly explicit activity); from then on, their physical relationship is less overt. They argue, wrestle, and occasionally come to sexual-tension-filled blows. Characters curse (including use of "f--k" and homophobic slang), smoke, and drink hard liquor in a "manly" manner. Married couples also argue, as wives come to resent their husbands' "other" interests.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the film's treatment of Jack and Ennis' relationship. How do their lying and betrayal affect their wives and children? Also, families can talk about whether or not it was "brave" for Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger to take their roles.

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: If you have the patience to sit through a slow-moving romance and you lack the vanity to be put off by explicit cowboy on cowboy relations, you'll greatly appreciate the light at the end of Brokeback Mountain, a work of art that's more than just a movie.

- Brian Marder,, Tuesday, May 18, 2010


- Dave White,, Tuesday, July 6, 2010


- David Ansen, Newsweek, Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Audience Reviews

4 stars

A woebegone tale of two ill fated lovers marched into a day and age that is not only unaccepting, but plainly bitter and one sided. Great performances by Ledger, Williams, and Hathaway as each was a caricature of unavailable or blind (even star crossed) love. Meanwhile Gyllenhaal's character wanted nothing less than complete and total happiness, to be who he truly was, and that performance came with a crystal clear message. Grand efforts on all parts.

- FrizzDrop, Monday, January 3, 2011

4 stars

Love Is A Force Of Nature

- ScoopOnline, Sunday, December 13, 2009

4 stars

It would be a complete lie if I said that I was not slightly disappointed with this movie. It is probably the single most discussed film of the '00s. The subject matter alone automatically gains or alienates so many viewers. I really feel sorry for the critics who had to review this movie. If they rated it poorly they will come across as homophebic, but if they rate it well any of their conservative readers will discard what they have to say. As far as that goes, I think it is a very hard movie for anybody to watch objectively. After finally watching Brokeback Mountain, I really do not see why it is so contraversal. Yes, it is about two men who have a homosexual love for one another, but unlike say Milk, it does not directly promote or condone homosexuality. If the two guys murdered their families and ran off into the sunset together the controversy would make sense. As it is, I just cannot see it. Ang Lee created a touching human drama that should be more or less assesible in some degree to just about everybody. I'm disappointed only because I found the movie to be a bit of a letdown after all of the hype. At the same time looking back on it, and thinking more about it, it seems more impressive than it did while I was watching it. While it did not completely blow me away, there was absolutely nothing that I found to be irritating about it. It is beautifully shot and presented. All of the acting is underplayed and confincing. Despite being a bit of a letdown Brokeback Mountain is an extreamely good movie, and even if it wasn't, it is a movie that should be watched strictly beause of its social relevance.

- neverteaseaweasel, Monday, January 18, 2010