reviewed by Andrew James
A woman wakes up in the middle of the night to find an intruder in her house, she is tied up and taken to a base to meet her adversary and his cronies. But there's something more to this woman than meets the... eye. What is it? Maybe what lurks in the shadows has the answer. Is it something to fear, or something to hope for? Guns and weapons abound in this suspenseful and disturbing action/thriller. To say much more than that about the plot, would spoil things. But let's take this thing apart shall we?
First off, the environment and effect shots. Wow! He did all this with $8000? Extremely impressive. The lighting is just sweet. For some reason it reminded me of places within The Matrix. Yet this setting has a feel all its own. Seriously, check out these locales. The gun fighting has a unique style and the people don't simply fall over dead when getting shot. There are interesting angles and camera movements as the bullets fly and hit their mark.
Second, the characters and the actors who bring them to life. The evil Duncan is for sure the bright spot among the charaters. Creepy and obviously disturbed, he really brings life to the film and is the character you really want to keep your eye on. The young girl who finds herself in this predicament is also pretty good in this role. With limited screen time (I say limited because of the length of the film), she makes the most of it and has us asking for more. There is obviously some interesting depth to her past.
The one drawback to the film is the fact that there are all of these other interesting looking character standing around who are not explored thoroughly enough. For example, the tattooed indian-looking fellow who gives up his guns for an obvious talent for knife throwing. Unfortunately he is dispatched before we get to see much of his talent. The same goes for a number of interesting looking "gangsters." I especially liked Marquez and her duel wielding fully automatic barettas.
I wish there was more to the movie. It was really good but left me wanting more. More characterization, more back story and more explanation as it ultimately doesn't make much sense. However, the fact that it left me wanting more, proves its remarkability. Unanswered questions are sometimes what makes a movie worthy of seeing. It gives you something to talk about afterwards. Not the usual, "it was okay." There's really something to discuss while the credits role. What this movie really needs now, is a prequel. Anyone who sees this film, will pay extra for that.
I've never before reviewed a short film. The only experience I have with them are the shorts before Pixar films and the few that I have caught while channel surfing past IFC. Oh, and Bambi vs. Godzilla. But I digress; although most of what is seen in Broken is not really anything new, it is new if you consider the fact that it was done so quickly and cheaply and without the help from a major studio; and done just as well as Hollywood, if not better, in many respects. The action sequence was directed/edited so superbly and was so much fun that it reminded me a little of the bar fight in Desperado. I hope that I explained it well enough to encourage everyone to check out this film if you can track it down. It takes less time than watching an episode of The Simpsons, but packs twice the punch. This film is wicked cool!
Official site - where you can pre=-order the DVD and see the trailer
B R O K E N at IMDB
Go straight to the trailer.