The Broken Circle Breakdown - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Broken Circle Breakdown Reviews

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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
Wes Greene
Slant Magazine
October 29, 2013
Felix Van Groeningen's film owes more than a debt to the unwieldy narrative schematics of Susanne Bier's narratives.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Simon Miraudo
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.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
November 21, 2013
As "Broken Circle Breakdown" nears its conclusion, the minor inauthenticities pile up, and even the parts we initially believed in start to seem false.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
October 31, 2013
After a while, the temporal shuffling feels more programmatic than revelatory and increasingly false.
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
November 22, 2013
The shuffled order and the external, passive treatment of the story doesn't seem very bluegrass.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
David Jenkins
Little White Lies
October 17, 2013
This handsome Flemmish melodrama (with added bluegrass) falls apart during its anguished second half.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
December 3, 2013
Despite its oft-putting grimness there were enough musical interludes, an homage to hillbilly American music, to keep me tuned in until its crowd pleasing conclusion.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Mike McCahill
October 17, 2013
I'm afraid I couldn't quite see past the oddness of its conceit: to redo Blue Valentine with songs.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
November 21, 2013
It's the story of a young married couple undone by a family tragedy, but the film loses its way, at one point turning into a political harangue.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Robert Roten
Laramie Movie Scope
November 25, 2013
This film has some beautiful music and attractive actors, all trapped in an ugly plot.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Top Critic
David Fear
Time Out
October 29, 2013
Both Baetens and Heldenbergh do their best to sell the story's ups and downs even when the narrative gets bogged down with science-versus-religion ranting, yet you're still left with a movie a little too reliant on playing clawhammer on your heartstrings.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Daniel Eagan
Film Journal International
November 1, 2013
Like the characters it portrays, The Broken Circle Breakdown is a heartfelt but sloppy mess. Moving at times, but a mess nonetheless.
Top Critic
Peter Keough
Boston Globe
November 14, 2013
Wastes its potential for honest emotion with schmaltz, cheap shots, and clichés.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Frank Swietek
One Guy's Opinion
December 10, 2013
All the cinematic extravagance is merely a cloak for what's essentially an overripe tearjerker.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
January 24, 2014
Breakdown gets the music right and has the benefit of strong acting, but its unapologetically melodramatic plot has a tendency to throw everything at you but the kitchen sink.
Gilda Williams
Sight and Sound
June 14, 2016
Constantly you worry that the movie will collapse under the strain of more raw emotions but it rarely falters and never lapses into the predictable or the sentimental.
Nick Newman
The Film Stage
June 22, 2016
A significant amount of redemption arrives in its final moments, which find a way to bind itself with the heart of the picture we've been observing for nearly two hours.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Brad Keefe
Columbus Alive
April 21, 2014
A devastatingly sad movie that is beautifully constructed and performed.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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