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Breaking and Entering
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Reviews & Ratings for
Breaking and Entering More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Juliette Binoche steals the show

Author: pc95 from San Diego
14 July 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Breaking and Entering meanders in the beginning and becomes more about infidelity than anything else. I thought the film really picked up once Juliette Binoche entered in as the main camera presence - about from the 2nd half on. Her character and acting were 1st rate as a scared, lonely, mother. Jude Law also turns in a performance perhaps better than some of his other movies. Their romance is strange but more believable and far more captivating than his steady relationship with Robin Wright Penn's character. As it was then, I didn't really care much for the family exposition with Law as a live-in boyfriend. It didn't give anything back. And Penn's daughter as having developmental/behavioral problems is distractingly annoying. So, the 2nd half of the movie really made it a worthy watch, especially with Binoche.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A bit confusing at times BUT none-the-less a FIRST RATE dramatic love story.

Author: Jay Harris ( from United States
6 July 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This very finely written & directed film by Anthony Minghella had a very limited run.I just cannot figure this out. AWFUL comedies like "40 Yr Old Virgin" play in over 3000 theatres & this real good movie & many other good films like CHILDREN OF MEN have next to no release at all. As per the old song from THE KING & I "Tis a Puzzlement"

The title has a few meanings in itself,(SPOILER ALERT) It is not the robbery at the beginning of the film, It is the breaking of the emotions of the characters & entering there psyche, that this film is about.

Jude Law is an architect creating a building at KINGS CROSS a London neighborhood. The area is like a miniature United Nations, We are dealing here as well with the breaking & entering of various diverse peoples thoughts etc,

Robin Wright Penn lives with Jude & they have a delightful daughter about 10 years old with problems as well.

Newcomer Rafi Gavron (one of the robbers who broke into Jude Laws building) is a refugee lad from Bosnia living with his mother played by the magnificent Juliet Binoche. as you can guess Jude & Juliet meet, & have an affair.

Now enter in the picture Ray Winstone as a policeman, & future STAR Vera Farigna as a prostitute., We break & enter into all these persons psyche,due to the clever & skillful screen play by Mr, Minghella.

ASs you can see at times this becomes a bit confusing BUT the acting by all is superb, I wish the Oscar people gave out an award for outstanding cast like the Emmy's & the Golden Globes'do. This film would have been nominated. The entire cast is just about pitch perfect.Thanks to the excellent direction Of Mr. Minghella.

A few more notes then I will finish. this is Rafi Gavrons first feature he is only about 20 years old (I did not look his age up), he does portray a slightly younger lad, & I do predict a bright future for him.

Now on to the main star JUDE LAW, When OH when is he going to get his Oscar.. He is like the old time actors from the 30's & 40's . He can do dramatic loves stories, comedies,He even can do villains. & gives excellent performances in all. He has a smile & charm that is dazzling,. in short HE IS A STAR.

Rent this film, I am sure you will like it.

Ratings ***1/2 (out of 4) 92 points (out of 100) IMDb 9 (out of 10)

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Complex and emotionally challenging...for Hollywood

Author: D A from SoFla, UsA
7 May 2007

Politely provocative slice of contemporary London falls short of aspirations but remains compelling enough to recommend as thoughtful entertainment. A sleek production helps punctuate these dramatic, intertwining narratives all revolving around the recent break-ins occurring at a brand new warehouse. Around this circumstance, competent writer/director Anthony Minghella weaves a little web of intrigue to help highlight the many insinuations this title bears. Exuding a sophistication the material cannot quite live up to, Breaking and Entering still remains a mature enough study into the psychology of adults to be met with class in the States.

Though it is a British film, Minghella knows how to mix his country's knack for depth with America's taste for more simplified, dumbed-down material to come up with a greatest common denominator of mainstream drama. With a sharp soundtrack, filming grimy nightlife around King's Cross through the seductive lens of Benoît Delhomme helps counter many of the scripts blemishes, which do come up more then one would hope. It is a script with more vague intentions then grave actualizations, only becoming thematically viable when a redemptive core gathers near the end.

Helping this literate soap opera along, an adept trio of star players breathe life into the film's many gray areas. Jude Law, Robin Wright Penn, and Juliette Binoche all sink their imaginary teeth into the emotional strain that surrounds an escalating connectivity. Law is one of Hollywood's most sensitive romantic lead actors, but his skills of perception still lack in the face of female counterparts, particularly Binoche in an assured take. Penn, also a great actress, plays more second or third fiddle in the narrative hierarchy, and despite relatively same amounts of screen time, feels under-utilized. For all it's structural and thematic annoyances, Breaking and Entering still proves that the popcorn is a helluva lot crunchier overseas.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Synergy doesn't always work

Author: Harry T. Yung ( from Hong Kong
3 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Breaking and entering has two stories both of which have considerable potentials for full development (not to mention a few interesting side characters that are also rather tempting). With something starting rather haphazardly, it attempts to link the two main stories in such a way that they become interactive, fueling a third. It may be a little too harsh to call what the movie ends up with "a mess", but by trying to do too much, this movie simply gets nowhere. Coming out of the cinema, rather than wanting to reflect on what you have just witnessed, you would more likely miss brilliantly simple and simply brilliant movies such as "A straight story".

Story number one is a problematic family. yuppie architect Will (Jude Law) and beautiful common-law (I suppose) Swedish wife Liv (Robin Wright Penn) could be in their blue heaven with 10-year old Bea (Poppy Rogers) making three. But they're not. Bea is only Will's step-daughter (not much background but not really important) which is not a big problem because Will is a decent and loving step-father who tries hard to make the family work. The problem is that Bea has a form of mental disorder that manifests itself in things like insomnia, hyper-tension and all sorts of phobia about what she eats.

The second story stems from the fact that Will and his partner's office is in the undesirable area of King's Cross, the target of the two architects' project of revitalization. Two break-ins takes us to the life of 15-year-old delinquent Miro and his mother Amira (Juliette Binoche), Bosnian Muslim immigrants seeking a better life but finding a struggle against prejudice and poverty.

And here's something that is not merely haphazard, but becomes far-fetched. In tracking down the thief, playing his own private detective, Will ends up having an affair with Amira. Her motivation, however, is more utilitarian than emotional, as it's a mother trying everything to protect her son. That part at least is not too far-fetched if you think of a character played by first class actress Tilda Swinton in a movie called "The deep end" (2001). And Boniche looks a lot better as a mother than a lover (think of her segment in "Paris, je t'aime").

The biggest problem with this movie is the emphasis it places (or misplaces, rather) on the affair, which is entirely unconvincing and devoid of chemistry. Law recites the lines that he doesn't seem to believe in. The story of the vicissitude of mother and son comes across a lot better, with some touching moments. What is most interesting, however, is the relationship between Will and Liv. Law and Wright (sorry Sean!) have some good moments, dancing tantalizingly between an unsalvageable gulf and a normal (sometimes even health) fight between couples. I particularly like the scene when after a fight, they reconcile through talking about thing Swedish, ABBA, The Beatles etc.

At the end of the day, this movie, as I said, is trying to do too much. It seems to want to rise above melodrama, to social, political, psychological drama and more, but ends up biting off more than it can chew, even for the director of "The English patient", "The talented Mr. Ripley" and "Cold mountain".

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

½ The Movie Would Have Been Twice as Good

Author: dshamoon from New York, NY
1 December 2006

Breaking and Entering is The Academy Award winning director of "The English Patient," Anthony Minghella's latest film. This is not an epic war romance, the film is set in modern London. If the movie was half as long, Mr. Minghella would be picking out a new tux for the Oscars. But, the two hour long film is too confused and overstuffed with ideas and character development to be bearable. See if the following synopsis gives you a headache: Will, (Jude Law) is an architect who has just opened up a slick new office that looks like an Apple store. Unfortunately, it is in a "developing" part of London famous for its hookers. His office gets robbed a few times and he decides to find the culprit himself by staking out his own office with a techno loving prostitute, (Vera Farmiga). The "free-running" thief turns out to be a fifteen year old boy, Miro (Rafi Gavron) who works for a gang of Serbian thugs related to his late father. Will tracks down Miro but ends up falling in love with Miro's mother, Amira (Juliette Binoche) a soundless-piano playing seamstress.

Need some Excedrin? That's only about half of the movie and I haven't even mentioned Will's depressed light-box loving, long time girlfriend Liv (Robin Wright Penn) and her gymnastics obsessed behaviorally challenged daughter.

I was lucky enough to attend a screening with a Q&A with Minghella after the film. He's obviously enjoying the clout of having an Oscar. It gave him the opportunity to write and direct this film inspired by some of his own experiences. The director even answered some questions from the audience. One of the best was, "how much did you get from Apple?" The film has a lot of Macs in it and Macs kept getting stolen from the office. At one point a character actually says, "these Macs are great aren't they?" It seemed like a clear case of product placement. Minghella said Apple gave him no money. He explained that it was an inside joke. He's Apple obsessed and his office in London kept getting its Macs stolen.

If you can sit through it, the acting is good. Law's performance is subtle and interesting. He has real chemistry with Both Binoche and Wright Penn. Unfortunately the characters are so developed they do not leave much room for the plot.

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6 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

A metaphorical art work!

Author: linyuwei1 from Kaohsiung, Taiwan
29 November 2006

It's a story full of metaphors. The title 'Breaking & Entering', in fact, captures and summarises all metaphorical scenes in this film: breaking an old relationship and entering a new one, breaking a window and entering a building, breaking a class boundary and entering a new middle ground. Even a construction site where the architect, starred by Jude Law, works symbolises a place composed of frequent breaking activities (knock down old buildings) and entering activities (constructing new buildings and entering a new space). The beautiful cinematography that often blurs a part of one scene, and the endless passing through a door are the other two significant symbols of 'breaking and entering' activities.

However, apart from the arty way of presenting the story, I was disappointed by the story. I reckon the story would be more gripping if the architect starred by Jude Law made a more definite decision - broke up with his wife/girlfriend and start a new relationship with a low class immigrant starred by Juliette Binoche. But on the other hand, if such a decision were made, the whole film probably lost its meaning and beauty of blurring and confusing after breaking and entering.

Jude Law and Juliette Binoche performed outstandingly while Robin Wright Penn did not really catch the role - she badly interpreted this middle class white woman who was a stressful mum uncertain about her relationship. I thought Nicole Kidman's role in Eyes Wide Shut would fit well if migrated to this film.

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8 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

please let it end

Author: pridgenpd from United States
26 August 2007

If I had to watch this movie again I think I would jab pencils in my eyes before it started. Extremely slow, pointless characters, sporadic plot, extremely illogical ending.

Don't waste your money on this movie.

Why do the reviews have to be so long? Why must my review be 10 lines long? I have typed my review and hope that my brief synopsis would assist other people, but now I have to type a few more lines. When I venture on, I do not want to read 15 paragraphs about a movie. I want to know if it is good, or if it is bad. My synopsis above states what most would like to see. Hopefully, someone will benefit from my short review.

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14 out of 27 people found the following review useful:

Jude Law worth a billion dollar

Author: dikha from Australia
6 February 2007

After the huge success of 'The Holiday' Jude Law is back to the top were he belong, the star of 'Cold Mountain,Alfie, Enemy at the Gates, Existenz etc is well loved. Jude Law starred in 'The Holiday' with In her shoes,Charlies Angels, Something about Mary and upcoming Shrek The Third - 'Cameron Diaz',Finding Neverland, The Life of Gail, Enigma - 'Kate Winslet who also has an Oscar nomination for upcoming 'Little Children' in this upcoming Oscars, Nacho Libre, King Kong and School of Rock and upcoming Tenachios D in the house of Destiny - 'Jack Black',The legend of Zoro,Triston and Isolde and upcoming the Illutionist 'Rufus Sewel'. All Delivered a brilliant performance a warm wonderful comedy which is still playing in some of our Cinemas in Australia since it's opening on Xmas Day.

The Huge success of 'The Holiday' prepared us for the new films which the stars are about to hit our cinema's with.

Jude Law was the first of the above cast to open his new film in Australia : Breaking and Entering - Jude Law shine like a knight. Brilliant performance, his face and his performance is worth a billion dollar.

'The Departed' 'Vera Farmiga' shine in 'Breaking and Entering' just as much as she shine in the Oscar nominated 'The Departed' which at last won it's Director 'Martin Scorcese' an award he was nominated 7 times in his life and never won and this is his first win so it was a fair win, 'The Departed and Breaking and Entering is Gorgeous 'Vera Farmiga' comeback after many years since 'Dummy'.

'Bee Season, Jet Lag and Chocolate - 'Juliet Pinoche' is brilliant she smile like the sun on a green field, I love her smile.

'Robyn Right Penn' comeback was very powerful with powerful performance, and nice sleek figure.

'Confetti, The Galaxy - 'Martin freeman' is a gem of a star he too worth a billion dollar.

'The Proposition, The Departed, - 'Ray Winstone' which I love very much he is one hell of a star to watch in 'The Proposition' which won many awards all over the world, best quote when he call his wife 'Emily Watson' with his majestic personality and deep gorgeous voice:Martha. I loved this scene and yes I loved his powerful performance in 'The Departed' and in 'Breaking and Entering' he is out of this world. brilliant indeed so flawless.

I loved 'Anthony Minghella' directing and I really thought his directing, the film 'Weinstine Company' and all the stars deserved an Oscar nomination,a great work of art by all.

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15 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

"I'm sorry" doesn't cut it for "Breaking and Entering"

Author: cinelyze from United States
10 December 2006

Once upon a time, love meant never having to say you're sorry. In "Breaking and Entering," a fairy tale of a different order, love is apparently about nothing but. Sadly, all of those apologies don't make us feel any better. Maybe that's because, by the time the film ends, we're not quite sure they're heartfelt.

In yet another collaboration with director Anthony Minghella ("Cold Mountain," "The Talented Mr. Ripley"), Jude Law plays Will, an architect who, with his partner Sandy (Martin Freeman), has just set up shop in King's Cross, a London neighborhood that is on the cusp of being gentrified but which still is known for its high crime rate. Think crack, prostitution and, yes, burglary.

Naturally, the high-tech architectural firm gets burglarized -- several times -- by a gang of immigrants who employ teenaged boys of superior athletic ability to initiate the break ins. One of these boys, Miro (Rafi Gavron), is as fascinated by what he finds at the firm as he is proud of his ability to earn a living in nefarious ways. This, of course, becomes a pivotal plot point that -- not to give anything away -- anyone paying attention will spot the moment it appears on screen.

In an attempt to do what the police (and apparently an effective security system) can't, Will and Sandy stake out their space at night, initially as a team and then just by Will, who forms an unusual relationship with Oana, a local prostitute (played to perfect humorous pitch by Vera Farmiga).

Will's distraction nearly causes him to miss another robbery in progress. But at the last possible moment he gives chase to Miro, who he follows to an apartment in a housing project. It is disingenuous of Minghella, who also wrote the screenplay, to ask his audience to buy why, at this point, Will doesn't just call the police.

Maybe it's because Will recognizes that, once again, he can practice the same rescuer skills he employed with the two people he lives with, Liv (Robin Wright Penn), his common law wife, and Bea (Poppy Rogers), her functionally autistic daughter. Maybe it's because, this time, he'll be able to get it right.

Whatever the reason, Will is compelled to satisfy his curiosity about Miro by visiting the apartment where the teenager lives with his seamstress mother, Bosnian immigrant Amira (Juliette Binoche). What transpires between these two is to be expected from a pairing of two such good looking actors/characters who cannot possibly not be attracted to each other.

That Will behaves totally irresponsibly throughout all that ensues is grist for the mill. That Minghella thinks he can make it all okay by having Will utter a series of "I'm sorry's" that are the equivalent of kissing a boo-boo better is to underestimate everyone involved.

It is to the credit of this fine cast that they all manage to turn in creditable performances, especially Wright Penn, who manages to do so much with so little. Of all the actors, though, the ones who turn in the most outstanding performances are Gavron, Rogers and, of course, Farmiga. This is a season of finely-honed supporting performances, and "B&E" offers some excellent examples.

To emphasize these performances, however, is to overlook one of the more important "characters" in "B&E". Minghella's films, including the critically acclaimed and commercially successful "The English Patient," prove that the writer/director is adept at integrating landscape-as-character into his films, and "B&E" is no different. Indeed, without King's Cross, and the artistry with which it was photographed by Benoit Delhomme, the film has very little reason for being. It is all the more unfortunate, therefore, that the script is not more specific about the class problems at which it barely hints.

Perhaps there is an apology adequate for such an oversight (not to mention the very unsatisfying ending), but "I'm sorry" just isn't it.

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Love, in all its forms

Author: blanche-2 from United States
1 September 2013

The late Anthony Minghella wrote and directed "Breaking and Entering," a 2006 film starring Jude Law, Robin Wright Penn,and Juliette Binoche.

Since this film is about people and not adventure or war, I'll say up front that this film moved slowly. I found it an honest and moving film about complex people with complex emotional -- and very real -- lives.

Jude Law is Will, an architect who has a brand new office with his partner Sandy (Martin Freeman). The problem is that the office is in King's Cross, a bad neighborhood. On the day they open their office, they're robbed and then they're robbed again.

Will's home life is strained - he lives with his Swedish girlfriend, Liv, and her autistic daughter, Bea. Bea causes chaos in the household and also requires a lot of attention. Will feels somewhat neglected, and there's a lack of communication in the household. Therefore, to get out of the house, he takes it upon himself to watch the office building at night. He's joined by a Russian hooker (Vera Farmiga) who brings him coffee in exchange for staying warm in his car. She offers herself to him but Will rejects her. Will isn't looking for sex. He's looking for love.

One night he sees a boy trying to break in. Will follows him home and takes note of the fact that his mother Amira (Binoche) is a tailor. The next day he shows up with a jacket to be repaired. Ultimately he wants to be repaired, and they start an affair. It turns out she's Bosnian, and she and her son Miro (Rafi Gavron) left with the Red Cross during the war; her husband was killed when he stayed behind. Unbeknownst to her, Miro's uncle has Miro and a group of his friends, who are experts at parkour, a discipline akin to gymnastics, break into places and steal computers. He soon discovers that Liv isn't the only mother who has an abundance of motherly love.

This is a wonderful story of the lengths a mother will go for her child -- both Liv and Amira, and the desire of two people to find their love again - Liv and Will. Liv and Bea, Will thinks, are in a "circle" that he's not in. He believes he has found true love with Amira, but there's another circle, and he can't be part of that either.

The acting throughout is marvelous from everyone involved. Jude Law is fantastic as a man who feels alone; Juliette Binoche gives a beautiful performance of a troubled and sensual woman, for whom trust is difficult; and Robin Wright Penn gives a strong performance as Liv, a Swede prone to depression and having communication problems with her husband.

A wonderful character study, a moving story, beautifully done.

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