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

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5 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

The deeper you dig, the banal it gets

Author: doichin from Bulgaria
6 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The film is surely enjoyable compared to "Crash" mentioned by the previous reviewer since it at least does not shout its banalities about human nature and society in your face. The film is well crafted and the cast performs quite decently. On the other hand the banalities are there. The main character attempts to replace the broken communications with his partner with action. He fails and his relationship is remedied with a "sorry" communication rather than with any action. The action itself is full-bodily personified by an ugly Russian prostitute who does not want to "blah-blah" even for money - charming but dysfunctional from a plot view. Since realty is dominantly verbal, the communication between people from different races, social strata and nationalities becomes totally (and unrealistically)unproblematic, leaving drama entirely in the domain of individual characters. Social drama then is only of second order. Bosnian tragedy for instance is reduced to the formula "It's very complex." Urban decay is just a moody setting for the story. The danger of entering into an eternal spiral of self-reflecting communication was cut by a quite naive ending - a harmless lye was presented to the institutions and a meaningful "tuth" was consumed within the couple and the small circle of characters with plot significance. A too Hollywood style happy end for a film that tries desperately to recreate the Britishness of say "Closer".

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6 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

simply awful (SPOILERS!!! - PLEASE DON'T READ if you didn't see the movie)

Author: test-516 from United States
31 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I just saw this movie and I'm simply disappointed. The movie was boring, the story loses its plot and is out of the track most of the time, only proper acting by well-known actors compensates a bit.

The whole story with the prostitute in Will's car is just useless, and I think it was made up as a filler between the main story, because something must be happening in the movie, right?

The ending is so screwed up I just can't believe it - I was expecting Will not to hold charges against the boy, but unexpectedly he makes up this stupid story about borrowing his notebook and all that stuff, and his wife confirms that (sic!) - what a nonsense!

This movie is a waste of money and time - DON'T WATCH IT!


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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The Film Does Not Deliver

Author: Desertman84 from United States
22 September 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Breaking and Entering is a romantic drama film that stars Jude Law, Juliette Binoche, and Robin Wright Penn. Set in a blighted, inner-city neighborhood of London, the film is about a successful landscape architect whose dealings with a young thief and his mother cause him to re-evaluate his life.It was written and directed by Anthony Minghella.

Will Francis is a successful landscape architect who runs an upscale business with his friend Sandy in the King's Cross section of London, a neighborhood that has long been plagued by crime and poverty but has lately become the target of a major gentrification program. Will's longtime girlfriend is Liv, a lovely woman troubled by a lack of communication between herself and her husband and emotional problems with their teenage daughter, Bea, who can't sleep and is obsessed with gymnastics. A thief has broken into Will and Sandy's office not once but twice, taking Will's laptop and the company's computer equipment, and Will begins spending his evenings at the shop in hopes of catching the culprit in action. The burglar strikes a third time, and while giving chase, Will sees him make his way into a shabby apartment building. Will learns the criminal is Miro, a 15-year-old refugee from Bosnia. Without revealing what he knows, Will makes the acquaintance of Amira, Miro's widowed mother -- a Bosnian refugee who makes a living as a seamstress. As Will starts bringing Amira business on a regular basis, the two begin an affair which continues even as Will maintains his relationship with Liv.

The complicated interactions involving class and culture that ensue between all these characters remain fascinating despite the fact that this film feels contrived and superficial.Unfortunately,characters don't act logically as the screenplay manipulates them towards deconstructing various social issues.Overall,not all parts of the script are equally well-developed and it leaves us too chilly to care.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Underwhelming yet emotionally overcooked

Author: paul2001sw-1 ( from Saffron Walden, UK
13 June 2012

Anthony Minghella's 'Breaking and Entering' tells the story of the lives and loves of a group of north Londoners; but I found it an underwhelming affair. Neither Jude Law's flat male lead, nor Robin Wright-Penn's neurotic female one, attracted my sympathy; and the film as a whole had a soft-focus, idealised feel to it, with heavy use of an emotional soundtrack to underscore dialogue that doesn't always justify the treatment, and a story of a love triangle which magically ends with everyone getting what they really want. A certain housing estate in north London features as a backdrop, one you may have seen before in other films: is it really the only architecturally interesting estate in the city? But this is not such an interesting film.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Robberies change a young man's life.

Author: Michael O'Keefe from Muskogee OK
10 May 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I found this rather boring, in spite of a multitude of critics raving about it. Will Francis(Jude Law)is a partner in a landscape architecture firm that has recently relocated to a different location. The thriving state-of-the-art business now located in a seedy part of town is attractive to a local gang of thieves. Will's partner(Martin Freeman)is aggravated as much as Will with the repeated robberies. Will going in search of the criminals follows a young man to an apartment that he shares with his mother Armira(Juliette Binoche). In spite of having a very lovely wife(Robin Wright Penn), the young architect enters into a torrid affair with Armira and begins his walk on the wilder side. The attraction to this film must be Law. Others in the cast: Rafi Gavron, Vera Farmiga and Poppy Rogers.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Serendipity and the Resulting Emotional Changes

Author: gradyharp from United States
12 May 2007

Anthony Minghella is an artist of distinction. His current successful role as writer and director of BREAKING AND ENTERING once again demonstrates how subtlety and economy can enhance the impact of a well-devised and well-paced strange story, leaving the viewer with a true sense of dramatic climax and awe. This is one of those under the radar films that is as fine as any before the public in the past year.

Will Francis (Jude Law) is a successful landscape architect who with his partner Sandy (Martin Freeman) has just begun a 'community restoration' project in the down and out King's Crossing area of London. Housed in an old building in that area from which the project will develop, they work with the finest of computers and business equipment - an easy target for locals to vandalize. Will lives with the Swedish American Liv (Robin Wright Penn) and her autistic young daughter Bea (Poppy Rogers) in a relationship that after 10 years has grown stale: the friction results in retreating into silence instead of communication. After two burglaries at the business occur, thefts that include Will's own laptop with all of his personal data, Will and Sandy begin nightly watches, hoping to catch the thieves. In this seedy area Will befriends an immigrant hooker Oana (a brilliant Vera Farmiga) while Sandy defends an accused cleaning girl immigrant Erika (Caroline Chikezie) until the two see two young boys breaking and entering on night. The lads are teenage Bosnian immigrants, good kids who are going with the flow of finding the means of survival in London. The boys, Miro (Rafi Gavron) and Zoran (Ed Westwick), escape the chase, though Will's pursuit results in his discovering Miro's home in the projects. Knowing that Miro's mother Amira (Juliette Binoche) takes in tailoring, Will drops off a jacket to be mended and is attracted to the beautiful unattached Amira with whom he gradually begins an affair.

Meanwhile Liv is in therapy with Rosemary (Juliet Stevenson) and attempts to include resistant Will in hopes of healing their domestic chaos. Their relationship is on the brink of dissolution, both adults are fatigued by the management of Bea, a situation which encourages Will to increase his participation in Bea's care, a decision which leads to an accident for Bea at Will's place of work. Eventually Miro and Zoran are captured by the police (Ray Winstone) and Amira is so devastated by the possible incarceration of her son that she takes measures with Will to secure herself. It is the manner in which the 'crime' by the boys triggers the breaking and entering of each of the lives, crippled by shells of defense, which serves as the sensitive resolution of the story.

The cast is perfection, providing plum roles for Law, Binoche, Penn, Farmiga, Winstone, Freeman and newcomer Gavron, each creating credible characters who though with less than pure lives completely drawn our empathy. Minghella's story is important and entertaining and the filming techniques are bold and innovative. Gabriel Yared provides yet another beautiful musical score and the added featurettes are informative - far better than the usual DVD fillers. A superb film, this. Grady Harp

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Dour drama creates ambivalence

Author: fertilecelluloid from Mountains of Madness
25 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jude Law, an architect, is feeling terribly distant from his Swedish wife (Robin Wright Penn) and her autistic daughter, so when his King's Cross offices are burgled, a search for greater intimacy begins. A deeply personal tale and a portrait of London's many faces, "Breaking and Entering" is initially compelling. Unfortunately, its second act sags and its resolution comes across as contrived. Juliet Binoche is pretty terrific as the mother of a boy involved in the burglaries at Law's offices; Law is attracted to her and hopes she can fill his need for intimacy. Not unexpectedly, their relationship creates interesting complications. Music by Gabriel Yared, who also scored director Minghella's "The English Patient", has a subdued, dour quality that also describes the overall tone of this movie. There is very little contrast here and almost no sunshine in the bleakness. The feeling one is left with towards this piece is ambivalence.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A must buy!

Author: no-speech-girl from Lisbon, Portugal
20 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

You can only distinguish honesty if you know dishonesty.

I fell in love with Minghella only with Cold Mountain (loved, loved). So i was looking forward for this movie. And i didn't get disappointed. At all.

And i loved how he mixed moments of great tension with some humor. That's Vera Farmiga's character. Very funny. She play's a prostitute who hangs with Will (Jude Law) when he plants himself outside his office (the object of breaking and entering).

At first it was weird to see Binoche as a Bosnian mom. But she plays it wonderfully, even speaking the language! Jude Law is very charming, as always, giving a great charisma to his character.

The end may be a little too perfect, but the movie is good for itself.

A delight!

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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Inconsistent Movie

Author: safinahmed from Portugal
26 January 2008

When I first came to check for info on this movie, I thought this would be a bad (or at least, not very good) movie.

But this movie surprised me, it catched me almost from the beginning, the big problem is that it loses you in the middle, and then picks you back up a little further down the road. It's a movie full of ups and downs in interest, otherwise it could have had a better review I suppose.

I didn't care much for Jude Laws performance (not that is was bad, it was nothing special), but I really liked Juliette Binoche in this movie (and I not her biggest fan) you can feel real emotions with her acting, and for me she's the main reason to stick with the movie when it's loosing you.

As for the hole plot of the movie, I would say it's interesting, not very believable though.

This movie shouldn't be your top pick of the week, but definitely try to watch it.

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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Good intentions developed on a very slow movie

Author: Argemaluco from Argentina
10 December 2007

I'm not a fan of director Anthony Minghella.His films The English Patient and The Talented Mr.Ripley,in spite of being acclaimed,had bored me with extremely slow developments.The only film directed by him that I liked was Cold Mountain and it was not great.Breaking and Entering,his most recent film,had good intentions but it's enormously sloooooow.This film has irrelevant scenes which do not add anything to the story(specially,the moments in which the prostitute appears).The movie's running time is of 2 hours but it's so slow that the running time seems to be of 4 hours.The film has a few good things like good intentions,a very good performance from Juliette Binoche and a good characters' development.But that things do not save this movie from being a tedious and extremely slow experience.I do not recommend Breaking and Entering.

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