Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Broken Circle Breakdown (2012)

Director: Felix van Groeningen. Cast: Veerle Baetens, Johan Heldenbergh, Nell Cattrysse. 111 min. Not Rated. Belgium/Netherlands. Drama/Romance.

Mind-numbing disaster strikes a Dutch-speaking American country music-singing Belgian couple (!), and their atheistic/religious struggle with the aftermaths crushes the heart and breaks the will. The pain is so severe, you almost want to reach out and help this couple. And curiously, the American references (music, flag, 9/11, Elvis) are not artificial - they each take a real part in this spiritual journey. With amazing performances by the award-winning lead actress and the screenplay-writing lead actor, this Foreign Language Oscar-nominated movie will keep you in a daze for awhile. How about leaving it up to what Tribeca said last year:

"The Broken Circle Breakdown is a true original, starting with the eclectic ingredients in its dynamic screenplay: a romance of opposites, a battle between spiritual faith and secular humanism, triggered by unthinkable tragedy, a Flemish bluegrass band. With dialogue that spans the sweetly flirtatious and the operatically confrontational -- and with dollops of humor and a pure, deep love of music - the film leaps nimbly back and forth in time to conjure vivid characters who face down literal life-or-death issues. They win both our rapt interest and our greatest empathy; they make us both think and feel."

PS: This is streaming on Amazon Prime.

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