6.9/10
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266 user 86 critic

Breakdown (1997)

R | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 2 May 1997 (USA)
A man searches for his missing wife after his car breaks down in the middle of the desert.

Director:

Jonathan Mostow

Writers:

Jonathan Mostow (story), Jonathan Mostow (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,878 ( 1,843)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kurt Russell ... Jeff Taylor
J.T. Walsh ... Red Barr
Kathleen Quinlan ... Amy Taylor
M.C. Gainey ... Earl
Jack Noseworthy ... Billy
Rex Linn ... Sheriff Boyd
Ritch Brinkley ... Al
Moira Sinise ... Arleen (as Moira Harris)
Kim Robillard ... Deputy Len Carver
Thomas Kopache ... Calhoun
Jack McGee ... Bartender
Vincent Berry Vincent Berry ... Deke
Helen Duffy Helen Duffy ... Flo
Ancel Cook Ancel Cook ... Barfly
Gene Hartline ... Tow Truck Driver
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

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:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Coke can that Deputy Carver is sipping at the Sheriff's office is advertising the 1996 Olympics, and were still in circulation at that time. See more »

Goofs

When Jeff is stopping Red's truck for the second time, Red turns on the turn signals. When the police officer searched the truck, the signals are off. See more »

Quotes

Red Barr: Now, before you get any half-baked ideas about calling in the cavalry, just remember we're gonna be watching you every step of the way. And we'll be listening to our police scanners. And if we see anything unusual, an unmarked car or truck, or if we see you talking to anyone who even remotely smells like a cop... well, you can just keep your fucking money, Jeff, and I'll keep your wife. And I'll mail you pieces of her from time to time.
See more »

Alternate Versions

German version was edited to remove sight of Kathleen Quinlan moving the gearshift of the pickup-truck (so it looks like Red Barr's truck falls down by itself). See more »


Soundtracks

This Game Of Love
(1997)
Lyric by Jonathan Mostow and Rachel Lipman
Music by Jeffrey Pescetto
Performed by Robbyn Kirmsse
Produced by Jeffrey Pescetto
See more »

User Reviews

 
No affectations, excellent acting brings out real-life tension
2 June 2012 | by dmckinleypSee all my reviews

It's 2012 and I just happened to catch this 1997 movie on a quiet morning in a motel. After 5 minutes I was hooked. To me the best thing about Breakdown is its real-life portrayal of ordinary people undergoing a sudden trauma. The second best thing is the non-stop action. But Kurt Russell in particular does a great job acting a man facing up to evil situation, and his gradual adjustment. In a typical tough-guy beat-em-up movie, the hero would be taking control of the situation right away. But in Breakdown, the bad guys have the upper hand, and a nearly fool-proof plan for getting away with extortion and likely murder. Russell at first is confused what is happening, then when the villains demand the money, he is finally able to think of his alternatives. All the while his face shows his torn emotions, still not quite believing what has happened to him, fighting panic, but forcing himself to think clearly. As the story moves along, he realizes these guys may actually plan to kill both of them even after they get the ransom, which is a whole new dilemma. He can swear to vent his frustration but that is about it. No heroics will save his wife until the time is right, and Russell shows that agony in those moments he has to submit to the kidnappers. JT Barr also makes a great cold-blooded villain, maintaining his cool from the start. And Quinlain, who I love as an actress (think Apollo 13) doesn't have a big role but she plays it perfectly. See this movie for a lesson in how good actors can overcome a middle budget movie and make it well worth watching.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 May 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Breakdown See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$36,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,307,128, 4 May 1997

Gross USA:

$50,159,144

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$50,159,144
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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