Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Eric Colvin, Nadja Brand Mason, Abbey Stirling, Olivia Hill, Atesh Salih
Directed by Adam Mason and Simon Boyes
Distributed by Dimension Extreme
Maybe I’m jaded. Or maybe, just maybe I’ve had it up to my neck with films featuring some poor chick being tortured sadistically for an hour and a half. How much is too much? How far is too far? For me I think this is about it. Color me officially bored.
That’s not to say Broken is a bad movie. In fact, Broken is one of the single most beautifully shot films I have seen in a very long time. Seriously, the cinematography is up there with some of our genre’s best. The acting is way above par. It’s directed well. It sports a great score and is home to some way above average gore effects. So what’s the trouble? Let’s look a little further for the answer.
Yes, the villain here (Colvin) does some pretty violent shit to the characters he shares screen time with. He’s completely despicable. Our heroine (Mason) is pitiful enough and we want to see her get away. As the film unfolded, much like I did with Rob Zombie’s Halloween, I just kept asking myself, “How come I’m not enjoying this?” All the key elements are firmly in place! What’s the deal?!? My best answer is simply overkill. Broken is like a good grunge band that didn’t make it to the party until the whiny emo kids started shitting broken hearts into our collective ears.
Growing up I dated a lot of women who dragged me to various chick flicks. These films ultimately ended up making them cry. I could never understand that … paying our hard earned cash to witness someone else’s pain (as if we don’t have enough of our own in real life) until we end up feeling like shit. Roll credits. YAY! Thanks for that side of ever-so-dismal tragedy with my hot buttered popcorn! Watching Broken and films just like it make me feel that same way. Joyless. Did I even have a good time watching it? I don’t know.
Also, splatter fans be warned — other than a few good gags here and there, this flick blows its load of true grue goodness primarily in its opening minutes in which we’re treated to two identical scenes and damned near identical F/X with varying results. A quite puzzling choice.
On the supplemental side of the fence, we get quite a look at the making of the flick. Between the commentary with directors Adam Mason and Simon Boyes and the near hour long featurette titled I Want You to Break: The Making-of Broken, we learn about the movie’s troubled history to completion. Along with the onscreen faux suffering, just about everyone involved with the project apparently had their own private hells to deal with. All this pain was poured into the flick and it shows onscreen, and honestly the film is probably better off as a result. From there we get a conversation with star Nadja Brand Mason, who delivers a truly powerhouse performance, an extensive production still gallery, and of course a trailer.
The best part about this package, however, is the box art! It slides open to reveal some really nasty stuff. Click the picture of it above to see the results for yourself. Truly clever and right up the horror fan’s alley!
I think the writing’s on the wall, folks. Hopefully the torture porn tide has gone out to sea for the very last time. If it does, it will have gone out on a good note with Broken. It’s time for something different though. Bring on some good old fashioned monster movies! Hell, bring on anything that doesn’t involve listening to some poor fucks scream their heads off for nearly two hours while tied up. Please.
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
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