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A mother and her daughter, a mother and her son, and a man living with one and attracted to the other. Miro, a teen from Sarajevo, lives near King's Cross with his mother; he's nimble, able to run across roofs, so his uncle hires him to break into office skylights, so the uncle can boost computers. Twice they steal from Will's architectural firm, so Will stakes it out at night. He follows Miro home and returns the next day and meets Miro's mother, Amira. At home, Will's relationship with Liv is strained - he feels outside Liv and her daughter Bea's circle. The stakeout and Amira's vulnerability are attractive alternatives to being at home. The police, too, watch Miro. Written by
When Will drinks the coffee the sex worker brings to him at midnight, "PRET" can be seen on the coffee-cup sleeve. However, the Pret A Manger at King's Cross closes at 8pm. See more »
Hi. I'm sorry.
You smell of perfume.
Well, I don't know how I do.
Nor do I.
I love you.
Is that an answer?
It's the truth. I feel as if I'm tapping on a window. You're somewhere behind the glass but you can't hear me. Even when you're angry, like now, it's like someone a long long way away is angry with me.
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How does one choose a film to view? Often it is the subject matter - here the fraught relationship between landscape architect Will and both his partner of 10 years Liv (who has an autistic daughter) and his new lover Amira (who has a thieving son). Sometimes it is star - in the case, Jude Law who has to choose between his American partner who has an obsessive approach to parenthood (Robin Wright Penn) and his Bosnian refugee girlfriend who works as a seamstress (Juliette Binoche). Other times it is the director - on this occasion, Anthony Minghella who writes as well as directs as he returns to the north London milieu in which he located "Truly, Madly, Deeply".
All of these are reasonable reasons for wanting to see "Breaking and Entering", but I confess that it was the supporting French actress Juliette Binoche that drew me to the work. I've been in love with her ever since her first English-language appearance in "The Unbearable Lightness Of Being" in 1988. She is simply beautiful in a bewitching manner, while always convincing as an actress, especially in vulnerable roles.
This is a multi-layered work in which the title can be taken in three ways: the obvious sense with the robberies perpetrated by Amira's son Miro; the deeper sense with Will's emotional assault on Amira; and still another sense as the middle-class Will and his like invade the traditionally working-class area of Kings Cross.
Those who need car chases or special effects in their movie experiences should avoid Mighella's parable, but those who value thoughtful and nuanced works will find much to admire here.
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