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Breakdown (I) (1997)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery  |  2 May 1997 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 36,448 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 217 user | 72 critic | 19 from

A man searches for his missing wife after his car breaks down in the middle of the desert.



(story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sheriff Boyd
Ritch Brinkley ...
Arleen (as Moira Harris)
Deputy Len Carver
Vincent Berry ...
Helen Duffy ...
Ancel Cook ...
Tow Truck Driver


Jeff and Amy Taylor are moving to California and must drive across the country. When they find themselves stranded in the middle of a desert with hardly anyone or anything around, their trip comes to a sudden halt. Amy had taken a ride with a friendly trucker to a small diner to call for help, but after a long time, Jeff becomes worried. He finds that no one in the diner has seen or heard from his wife. When he finds the trucker who gave Amy the ride, the trucker swears he has never seen her. Now Jeff must attempt to find his wife, who has been kidnapped and is being held for ransom. But who can he trust? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A cross-country trip. An unexpected breakdown. The trap has been set. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence/terror and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 May 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A félelem országútján  »

Box Office


$36,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$12,307,128 (USA) (2 May 1997)


£2,020,938 (UK) (29 May 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Red (J.T. Walsh) says to Jeff (Kurt Russell):"49 minutes, Jeff. Time to get the show on the road." - it is exactly 49 minutes until the end of the movie. See more »


Reflected in the Jeep window during the opening sequence. See more »


Jeff: [pointing a gun at Red] You'd better pray she's still alive.
See more »


Features Ultimate Doom (1993) See more »


This Game Of Love
Lyric by Jonathan Mostow and Rachel Lipman
Music by Jeffrey Pescetto
Performed by Robbyn Kirmsse
Produced by Jeffrey Pescetto
See more »

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User Reviews

Fine thriller with believable plot twists, exciting climax
14 April 2005 | by (Co. Durham, UK) – See all my reviews


Aspect ratio: 2.39:1

Sound format: Dolby Digital

After their car breaks down in open country, a married couple (Kurt Russell and Kathleen Quinlan) are pitched into mortal danger when Quinlan disappears after accepting help from a sinister trucker (J.T. Walsh).

Well-scripted thriller, in which Russell and Quinlan become entangled in a ghoulish extortion plot after falling prey to some less than savory characters (I'll say no more). Believable plot twists lead to a dynamic climax which should have most viewers rivetted to their seats, and which probably accounted for director Jonathan Mostow being hired to direct TERMINATOR 3: RISE OF THE MACHINES (2003). Tense, exciting stuff, worth a look.

21 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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