The Broken Circle Breakdown Reviews

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Sean Burns
EntertainmentTell
May 5, 2015
Fragmented and raw. A wrenching drama.
Austin Trunick
Under the Radar
August 18, 2014
More so than its music, Broken Circle's greatest merit are the compelling performances Van Groeningen cultivates from both his leads.
Full Review | Original Score: 7.5/10
Landon Palmer
Film School Rejects
June 2, 2014
I wish the patience and grace of the director's techniques in the film's strongest non-musical moments were matched in his depictions of the amazing music on display.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
David Stratton
The Australian
May 19, 2014
It's a film about a couple whose tumultuous relationship is severely challenged, and the performances are excellent.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Paul Byrnes
Sydney Morning Herald
May 19, 2014
Where the Coen brothers gently mocked th[e] music in O Brother Where art Thou?, this plucky little Belgian film reconnects that music to the sorrows that produced it. Just brilliant.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
May 16, 2014
There are plenty of touching, powerful moments in director Felix Van Groeningen's child-with-cancer drama...though [it's] somewhat laboured. The 2012 French film Declaration of War dealt with a similar topic in more lyrical, more affecting manner.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Damien Straker
Impulse Gamer
May 13, 2014
In spite of the bleak premise the film isn't an emotional force.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Margaret Pomeranz
At the Movies (Australia)
May 13, 2014
It is for most of its length a strong involving narrative with wonderful performances from the two leads, Heldenbergh and Baetens and a simply lovely one from young Nell Cattrysse.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Tom Clift
Concrete Playground
May 13, 2014
Despite the miserable subject matter, writer-director Felix Van Groeningen manages to mostly strike the right chord, eschewing unchecked histrionics for honest, bittersweet emotion.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Louise Keller
Urban Cinefile
May 11, 2014
The juxtaposition of bluegrass music in this heavy-hitting drama about love and loss brings with it an unexpected and exquisite timbre. Take a tissue - this is an affecting film that touches the heart
Brad Keefe
Columbus Alive
April 21, 2014
A devastatingly sad movie that is beautifully constructed and performed.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Ray Pride
Newcity
April 7, 2014
"Broken Circle Breakdown" ends with a communal song in a confined space, not a dirge, but with hushed voices raised in envoi, and Groeningen's camera trickles down to pick out one last, final, lasting image. It all comes full circle.
Sean Axmaker
Turner Classic Movies Online
April 3, 2014
It's a powerful film that builds to intense, overwhelming emotions with a very human core.
Anna Tatarska
Movie Mezzanine
March 13, 2014
Sensibly written and thoughtfully directed, intuitively acted, bitter-sweet like Belgian chocolate, and propelled by incredible bluegrass music.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
MaryAnn Johanson
Flick Filosopher
March 11, 2014
Electric sexiness and very modern motifs overlie a wonderfully old-fashioned melodrama... a highly gratifying one, if you enjoy a good ol' weep.
Scott Nash
Three Movie Buffs
February 26, 2014
Raises itself far above its Lifetime Movie of the Week premise.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Simon Miraudo
Quickflix
February 9, 2014
The Broken Circle Breakdown doesn't jerk tears. It attempts to extract them by using enhanced interrogation techniques.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
January 30, 2014
The movie swings like a pendulum between elation and despair, with little time devoted to anything in between.
Kam Williams
Baret News
January 26, 2014
Groovy German bluegrass, if you can believe it.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
January 24, 2014
Traditional bluegrass songs of loss and grief provide the inspiration and score for this innovative Belgian, Flemish-language musical drama.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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