The Broken Circle Breakdown Review – A Heartbreakingly Honest Emotional Love Journey

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

“The Broken Circle Breakdown,” from Menuet Productions and Topkapi Films and distributed by Tribeca Films, brings to the screen a heartbreakingly honest, deeply touching emotional love journey through life, loss and unquenchable sorrow.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown,” the official 2013 Belgium Academy Award Foreign Film Submission, stars Veerle Baetens, Johan Heldenbergh and Nell Cattrysse as Maybelle. With Geert Van Rampelberg, Nils De Caster, Robbie Cleiren, Bert Huysentruyt, Jan Bijvoet as members of The Broken Circle Breakdown Band and Blanka Heirman.

Flawlessly directed by Felix Van Groeningen, “The Broken Circle Breakdown” was beautifully written, with realistic and challenging dialogue by Carl Joos and Felix Van Groeningen and was adapted from the play of the same name written by Heldenbergh and Mieke Dobbels.

As the film opens Didier, played by Heldenbergh, and his Bluegrass Band, are gathered around a singular microphone signing “May the Circle be Unbroken.” The band is in perfect harmony, symbolic of life at the moment; good, working well in perfect harmony. No additions needed.

The scene fades to a hospital where a child, Maybelle played exceptionally by child actress Nell Cattrysse, is having her blood drawn and tested. In the same frame, her mom, Elise, embodied by award winning actress Veerle Baetens, is coaching her through the pain.

The Broken Circle Breakdown,” presents the pinnacle moments in the lives of Elise and Didier and then returns through flashback filling in, the colors, the layers of life.

We meet our young family as they are meeting each other. A lifelong fascination with American stories birthed from sorrow and struggle, Didier leads a Bluegrass Country and Western band. Meeting Elise, a contemporary independent tattoo artist, with her own shop, livelihood and success, he attempts to interest her in his love for Bluegrass and America and she, looking for a sale, attempts to interest him in a permanent symbol of his fascination.  It is love.

Our young couple find themselves happy and as the quilt of a life together is crafted, the patchwork takes on shades of darkness of the ups and downs of passion.

The child they create and question as they didn’t know if they could be good parents or if they even wanted to break the bliss of lustful lovemaking with the interruptions of responsibilities, becomes the golden thread in the life these two free spirits are building.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown” is gut wrenching sad. We’re not even midway through the film when the first breech in the circle, the lovely child, Maybelle, becomes terminally ill.

The two recklessly try to find something, someone to cling to as the loss has irreparably destroyed a part of their life. The post traumatic stress that follows the devastation drives each of them to search separately and desperately for a lifeline to simply keep emotionally afloat. They question science, God, each other looking to shift the blame of personal, without cause, guilt to each other. 

The parallel story in “The Broken Circle Breakdown” is the rise in fame of the band, which is not mentioned by name. In the opening scenes the band is playing small venues, all the men singing around one microphone, at the end, in the final scenes, they are signing to a theater about the size of Radio City Music Hall. With the deep, fathomless, anguish, fame just isn’t enough.

Life becomes such a struggle Elise even attempts to the change her name to a trigger word from their lustful, youthful, pre-marriage past, and gives Didier a new name also, the object of his love. No longer Elise and Didier she becomes in fantasy Alabama and he Monroe. Her last act of love was to immortalize her heart, soul, love, life, present and past.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown” is an exceptional film.  Flawless, it is movie making perfection with all elements dialogue, direction, photography, talent each working together to produce a harmonious union.  

Veerle Baetens and Johan Heldenbergh give world class performances. They bring stunning portrayals, exhibitions of depth and range that one would expect from the best, most renowned and recognized talent. Child actress Nell Cattrysse is exceptional. The supporting cast shines also.

With an ode to American cowboy, “The Broken Circle Breakdown” blends the love of Bluegrass Music, acoustic strings, a great soundtrack of country and western tunes adding warmth to the outstanding film.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown” won top honors at the 2013 Berlin International Film festival, Panorama Audience Award, at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival the film was awarded Best Screenplay for a narrative feature and Veerle Baetens won Best Actress in a narrative feature and also Nine Ensor Awards of Flemish Cinema including for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Music.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown,” a poignant and deeply, excruciatingly, moving, cinematic masterpiece provides one of the most gripping performances by an ensemble cast in 2013.   See this film. You’ll hold your loves closer.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown,” in Dutch with English subtitles, opens in select cities November 1, 2013.

 

 

Haute Tease

  • Money News: DOW Closes Up; European, Americas Close Up; Asian Split

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Dow Jones Industrial, after feeling the sting of a bear market fought the rocky start and deep declines and managed to rally, pulling itself up of the abyss and ending the week strong with a solid triple digits gains.

     
  • AARDMAN Animations Coming To The Academy And Siggraph

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences celebrates the work of Aardman Animations with three programs featuring the studio’s Oscar®-winning and nominated Wallace and Gromit shorts on Friday, August 7, and Sunday, August 9, 2015.

     
  • Fifteenth Annual Tribeca Film Festival Announces Juried Award Winners

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The 15th annual Tribeca Film Festival, co-founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff, and presented by AT&T, recently announced the winners of its competition categories. Top awards went to Dean, Junction 48, and Do Not Resist. The Festival completed it run April 24, 2016.  

  • 2016 San Luis Obispo International Film Festival Announces Film Program, Events and Awards

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The 22nd Annual San Luis Obispo International Film Festival is proud to announce its full film schedule, online now at slofilmfest.org. The SLO Film Fest, scheduled for March 15-20, 2016, will be headquartered in downtown San Luis Obispo, with screenings planned for Paso Robles and Avila Beach.  

  • Money News: World Markets Shaky as Greek Banking Crisis Looms

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The DOW Jones Industrial Average fell prey to the growling bear once again and closed down with most of the top ten global markets effected by the repercussions of the Greek financial news reverberating from the Eurozone.

     
  • Cole Patterson Men’s Skin Care Review – Refreshing Luxury Exclusively for Men

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Cole Patterson, a relatively new name to the men’s grooming market, offers a high end, luxury line of skin care products created exclusively for men who understand cleanser, toner, facials and mask, are necessary for male skin care management.  

     
  • Seven Features Advance In Race For Makeup And Hairstyling Oscar®

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA — The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that seven films remain in competition in the Makeup and Hairstyling category for the 86th Academy Awards®.

     
  • Money News: North American, European Markets Close Down; Asian Markets, Mexico Up

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The DOW Jones Industrial Average, wrestling the Bear took a hit for the fourth straight week, closing down and setting a global tone across the European Markets with the Asian Markets breaking away to close up.  

Crime

  • Boston Bomber Found Guilty; Sentencing to Follow

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the Boston Marathon Bomber, was found guilty of homegrown terrorism and other crimes after a month long trial where the theory of mental coercion by the defendant’s brother was introduced. His guilty verdict deems him death penalty eligible.

     
  • Breaking: Judge Orders All Cash Bonds on New Mexico Child Killers

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    In the first court appearance since their arrest on the murder of 10-year-old Victoria Martens, a New Mexico Judge has ordered bond set on all three at 1M all cash for Michelle Marten, Fabian Gonzales and Jessica Kelly.

     
  • James Bulger Appeal Deadline Nears

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    James Bulger, the notorious Boston mobster convicted in what has been called a sham proceeding, is fighting for the chance at a new trial to present evidence of alleged deals he had with members of the Massachusetts State law enforcement.

     
  • Hannah Anderson Sheds Little Light on Mental State of James DiMaggio

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Hannah Anderson, the teen abducted by James L. DiMaggio, has shed little light on his mental condition witnessed throughout the six day ordeal that began when the family friend tricked her mother into coming to his aid.

     
  • UPDATED: Colorado Teen Has Died From Injuries Sustained in School Shooting

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Claire Davis, 17, the Arapahoe teen shot at point blank range by a lone gunman who entered the Colorado suburb high school prepared for mass casualty, has died from injuries sustained in school shooting.

     
  • Teen, Tortured and Shamed by Dad, Commits Suicide

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Isabel Laxamana, a beautiful raven haired ‘tween, suffered the brutalities of bullying when her father believing discipline, including shaming, would stop any future poor social media choices chopped off her long hair on camera and uploaded the video.

     
  • New York City Blast Injures 29; Second Device Found

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A powerful homemade bomb placed in a steel garbage unit exploded in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, injuring 29, just after 8:30pm Saturday, launching a fireball into the air, blowing out windows, rocking cars and sending residents fleeing.

     
  • UPDATE: Fourth Victim, Cousin of Shooter, in Washington State School Shooting Dies;Brings Total to Five

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The fourth student victim of the deadly shooting at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington State, has claimed its fifth victim as parents and survivors are returning to school while trying to cope with the senseless tragedy.

Auto, Yachts, Jets, Real Estate

  • Playboy Mansion Sells to Neighbor; Allows Bunny Patriarch Lifetime Living

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Hugh Hefner sold his Holmby Hills Mansion for a cool $100Million, half of the original listing price, to his neighbor, Daren Metropoulos, the owner of Hostess Snack Foods. The Playboy Enterprises founder will live out his days dolling out $1M annually for expenses.

     
  • Bienvenue Chez VousConcierge Auctions Announces Its First European Auction In Sexy Saint Tropez, France

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Leading luxury auction firm, Concierge Auctions, enters the European market in ultra sexy Saint Tropez, France,the 11th country in which the firm is now holding auctions, with the auction of Villa La Ponche, a prívate estate boasting French Riviera views.

     
  • Celebrity Real Estate News: Walt Disney's Palm Springs Vacation Home on The Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    When Walt and Roy Disney co-founded the Walt Disney Co. in 1920, they had dreams of large success, but likely could not have fathomed becoming the world leader in fantasy, cartoon characters and family film. 

     
  • Celebrity Real Estate: Fashion Designer Pierre Cardin Lists South of France Retreat; Asking Tops All European Markets

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Pierre Cardin, the French fashion designer, known for his unusual designs, geometric shapes and a departure from feminine couture, was considered avant-garde inventing a bubble dress which he introduced in 1954, a decade before the modern cultural revolution.

     
  • Toronto Mansion of former Newspaper Magnet Conrad Black Set For Auction

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A grand and coveted historic Canadian mansion, privately located in Toronto's premier Bridle Path enclave, just 15 minutes outside of downtown Toronto, will be offered for sale at auction after 65 years of family lineage.

     
  • Keith Richards and Patti Hansen Put Laurel Canyon Home on The Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Laurel Canyon was ground zero for the birth of 1960’s and 70’s rock and roll with everyone, who was anyone, living there making hippie music in the canyon with residents such as Jim Morrison, Joni Mitchell, Frank Zappa and Keith Richards.

     
  • Celebrity Real State News: Enrique’s Former Miami Mansion, with Prime Bay and Skyline Views, On Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Iglesias men cover a wide range of music genres.  Father Julio, now 73, with his chiseled features, deeply romantic songs, and smooth bedroom voice, with a law degree on the side, has sold over 120 million records.