Movie InfoIn this suspense thriller, a man discovers the unexpected danger of trusting a good Samaritan. Jeff Taylor (Kurt Russell) and his wife Amy (Kathleen Quinlan) are driving through the New Mexico desert en route to California when an incident with a lunatic driver causes their jeep to break down in the middle of nowhere. Jeff is trying to fix the vehicle when an apparently friendly truck driver, Red Barr (J.T. Walsh), stops by to offer help. Red tells the couple that there's a diner a few miles down the road where they can call for help; Jeff decides to stay with the car while Amy hops a ride with Red to see if she can find a mechanic to help them. After a long wait, Jeff is able to get the jeep running again, and he discovers that the diner is indeed a few miles down the road. But everyone there claims they've seen no sign of Amy, and Red claims to know nothing about picking her up. When Jeff attempts to file a missing person's report, he discovers mysterious disappearances are disturbingly common in this stretch of the desert; he soon realizes that someone has kidnapped his wife, but he's not sure who, or for what purpose. … More
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Critic Reviews for Breakdown
[Kurt Russell's] lack of energy afflicts the film as much as its director's lack of ideas.
Breakdown has plenty of deft action sequences, and what they add up to is nifty garbage disposal, with all of us -- characters, filmmakers, viewers -- ultimately spiraling down the same drain.
Although Breakdown certainly resembles a compacted version of George Sluizer's Americanized remake of his 1988 Dutch/French psychothriller, it actually owes a lot more to The Hitcher in terms of tone, atmosphere, and execution.
...one of the most effective and flat-out engrossing thrillers within recent cinematic history...
A first-rate nail-biter that packs more genuine white-knuckle moments into 100 minutes than a dozen overpriced volcano movies could ever dream of having.
A taut, well-crafted suspense film that delivers the paranoid goods.
An engrossing, exciting nailbiter that makes the most of every single one of its efficient 95 minutes.
Are we really supposed to empathize with the empathy-proof Kurt Russell? I was actually hoping that his character's wife had run away with the trucker ...
A well-crafted thriller.
Pure free-fall fun.
It's a little silly and you do have to suspend your disbelief, but it's a thrilling ride.
A spare, solid, sharply paced tale of terror that does what a thriller is supposed to do -- scare the bejesus out of you.
Nifty morality play about the invidious vices of envy and showing off.
A well-made B thriller.
[Mostow is] able to sustain a nightmarish reality that is at once gripping and chilling.
If you liked Hand That Rocks the Cradle, or Eye for An Eye, you are gonna like Breakdown.
It's a cool flick, with a good story, and it's worth paying full price. And I never say that about Kurt Russell movies.
Some movies have such good set-ups, that they are virtually assured to be something of a let-down when it comes time for the follow-through. Jonathan Mostow's Breakdown is such a movie.
A fairly taut thriller that gets into gear by stealing parts from Duel, The Vanishing and Deliverance.
Audience Reviews for Breakdown
A plain old bad movie with a ridiculous plot and no logic. The first thirty minutes was sort've interesting, but after that it just takes a trip to crazy town. It just becomes the most ridiculous plot that has no base in reality. They tried to attempt blending abduction with action and it just didn't work.More
"Breakdown" is without a doubt one of the best action movies I've ever seen, and one of the more overlooked. It's about a married couple that get stranded after their car breaks down in the desert. A truck driver (J.T. Walsh), convincingly urges Kurt Russel that he will take his wife to a nearby phone so she can call for help. However, that's when Russel's wife gets kidnapped and this movie really starts to roll. Kurt Russel goes on an action packed adventure to try to find his wife and when he finally finds where she's at, the suspense gets more intense than just about any movie I've ever seen.
I don't see why "Breakdown" wasn't one of the biggest blockbuster hits of the 90's. Kurt Russel puts on one of his best performances ever and J.T. Walsh plays his role as the main villain as close to perfection as any other actor ever has. "Breakdown" has many of the best and most suspenseful action sequences you'll find in any movie. You wouldn't really know that the music stars aren't actors for a living cause they do a great job.
There's not many movies that I'll watch twice within a week, but "Breakdown" was so good I watched it 4 times the first week it premiered on cable. I also told all my friends and family how good it was and that they needed to watch it. I taped it the last time I saw it and it's still on my list of one of the best action movies of all time and it always will be. It is also one movie you will never forget. If you like action movies with great suspense and non-stop action, "Breakdown" is one movie you can't miss.
One of those movies where the world is stacked against you, but you battle against the bad guys if it is the last thing you ever do. The movie keeps you interested til the very end, in fact at the end on the bridge, I was wondering if any one else would come along for Kurt Russell to battle with.More
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