Breaking In review by Bobby Blakey
There is a whole drama/action/thriller sub-genre focusing on mother’s fighting for their kids or themselves against a deadly threat. If handled right they can bring together some great action and suspense, but not all them manage to pull that off. The latest Breaking In stars Gabrielle Union, Billy Burke, Aijona Alexus and Seth Carr with V For Vendetta director James McTeigue at the helm, but could this movie offer up anything worth breaking in for or will it fail to get past the perimeter?
Breaking In follows Shaun Russell who takes her son and daughter on a weekend getaway to her late father's secluded, high-tech vacation home in the countryside where the family soon receives an unwelcome surprise from four men who break into the house in search of a hidden safe. After managing to escape, Shaun stops at nothing to turn the tables on the thieves and rescue her two children being held hostage in a house designed with impenetrable security. No trap, no trick and especially no man inside can match a mother with a mission. Most of the trailers for this film made it look like a pretty generic thriller and while it is on some level I give it credit for a lot of the decisions. Union does a decent job with the role of showcasing a range of emotions with fear, concern and anger that is required for it to actually make the story work.
There isn’t anything here you haven’t seen before and in some cases probably better, but they took a simple premise and made it compelling at times. There is no silly back story making her a bad ass or anything but instead just a woman fighting to save her kids. In most films like this they always make the females that are fighting just lay there and let the bad guys beat them up without doing much of anything, but here they at least have keep fighting no matter how much she is losing to give it a more realistic effect. Sure there are some no so believable moments, but you kind of expect them in these kinds of films. Where the film struggles is the predictability of it all. They tried to make it a bit more complex with some mystery and characters that are conflicted, but it was never overly surprising to wear it was all headed.
While this film isn’t breaking down any walls in the genre it does work way better than expected and manages to at least offer up something entertaining. If you like films like this or the cast itself then give it a try and decide for yourself. This release not only includes the film it also includes bonus content including deleted & extended scenes, commentary, featurettes, an alternate opening and both unrated and theatrical edition of the film.
Join the fight for survival when Breaking In available now on Digital HD and then on Blu-ray and DVD on August 7th from Universal Home Entertainment.