Brian Brown-Easley (John Boyega) is an ex-marine war veteran. Each day, Brian struggles with various mental and emotional challenges. Financially failing to make ends meet and not receiving the right help and support, Brian decides to take matters into his own hands by doing something dangerous and highly unexpected. Brian equips himself with various items and walks into a local bank. As he enters the bank, he instantly holds several people hostage, claiming he’s carrying a bomb in his carry bag.
Now, Brian requests the presence of local law enforcement while continuing to hold hostages inside the bank. He soon reveals his reasons for requesting law enforcement and taking over the bank, all surrounding his most recent disability cheque. Soon, the police arrive on site and begin speaking with Brian to negotiate various terms. However, what starts as a standard confrontation soon becomes more dramatic and tense as Brian refuses to stand down.
Breaking is best described as a drama film with intense moments. It should be known that the film is based on a true story. John Boyega brings a memorable and impressive performance to life. His convincing performance will soon have audiences believing Brian is skilled and clever at defending his position. I also loved seeing Brian continually thinking and sharing his processing for his every move. For the vast majority, he’s highly cautious of his surroundings, always trying to be one step ahead.
Pacing-wise, I enjoyed the opening. We receive little detail about why Brian would suddenly take over a local bank and hold the staff hostage. Despite the lack of information, audiences will want to learn more about the reasons behind Brian’s choices. The second act is a strong continuation of the story, and John Boyega continues to shine wonderfully, keeping my investment in the story and its leads high. However, I was saddened by how the third act slowed the drama and pace, becoming highly predictable. I can’t deny that the on-screen text before the credits appeared did surprise me and left an unforgettable imprint in my mind. I felt both heavy-hearted and grateful to be made aware of this story, its conclusion, and its status.
Overall, John Boyega brings a knockout, compelling and realistic performance to the screen. Breaking is a gripping and tense film based on true events, and I was thankful to see many aspects revealed to the world. The first two acts hooked me deeply; however, the third act struggled to wrap everything up and fell into a much slower and predictable path. Still, there is some impressive work to witness here, and the storyline left me feeling heavy-hearted as the credits rolled. Breaking (2022) is Available to Rent and Own from April 5th.