Breaking In (2018)

Director: James McTeigue

Writer: Ryan Engle (Screenplay) Jaime Primak Sullivan (Story)

Starring: Gabrielle Union, Billy Burke, Richard Cabral, Ajiona Alexus, Levi Meaden, Seth Carr, Mark Furze

 

Plot: A woman fights to protect her family during a home invasion


Tagline – Payback is a Mother

Runtime: 1 Hour 28 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Entertaining Home Invasion Film

 

Story: Breaking In starts when Shaun Russell (Union) takes her children Jasmine (Alexus) and Glover (Carr) to her father’s estate after his death, the weekend is meant to be to prepare the house for sale. The weekend takes a dark twist when four thieves Eddie (Burke), Duncan (Cabral), Sam (Meaden) and Peter (Furze) have broken in, searching for a secret safe.

With Shaun locked out and her children being held captive by the thieves, she will do anything to save her children, not caring what the men want, this does become a battle of a mother that will do anything versus thieves that won’t stop for anything.

 

Thoughts on Breaking In

 

Characters – Shaun is a mother of two children that is tidying up the affairs of her late father, she thinks her weekend will just be tidying up his house, but she soon shows that she has a few skills picked up from her father, she will play a cat-n-mouse game with a group of thieves that are holding her children hostage, Shaun will prove herself as somebody smarter than the thieves, showing a mother’s love will overcome any plan. Eddie is the leader of the thieves, he remains calm and in control, even if his men can get out of hand, he only wants the money, getting pushed into difficult decisions. Duncan is the loose cannon of the thieves, he doesn’t want to leave any witnesses to the crime they are committing. Jasmine is the eldest daughter that needs to protect her little brother from the situation, even if the two have a bickering relationship.

PerformancesGabrielle Union in the leading role is great, she brings us a strong powerful mother that isn’t going to let any man take advantage of her family. Billy Burke does bring the required calmness to his character which is everything needed, with Richard Cabral bring his own unhinged character to life to just about step away from the generic normal one. Ajiona Alexus and Seth Carr fill the children roles which in the works very well as they feel like they could easily be brother and sister.

StoryThe story here follows a mother that will do anything to get her children to safety after their home gets invaded by a group of criminals searching for money. This is a home invasion film, it doesn’t need to break away from the normal in anyway, we know the formula, with this one putting the spin on the mother being separated from her children, we have the discussion of power between the criminals and mother, which is an important scene. We see how the mother might have a few more tricks up her sleeves that first thought. This is everything you expect without needing to make anything complicated, making it an easy watch.

Action/Crime The action is restricted because of the separation between the characters, but when we need it, we get action we need, the crime story does follow how the thieves operate, though we don’t learn everything about the father’s situation in the criminal world.

SettingsThe film is set in one location which is the house that has the ability to hold people out or keep people in, this helps build the battle between mother and thieves.


Scene of the Movie –
Losing control.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Not truly learning about the Shaun’s father previous life as a criminal.

Final ThoughtsThis is a by the book home invasion film, it does give us plenty of entertainment and is above the average in the sub-genre.

 

Overall: Home invasion above the rest.

Rating

 

 

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Sleepless (2017)

Director: Baran bo Odar

Writer: Andrea Berloff (Screenplay) Frederic Jardin, Nicholas Saada, Olivier Douyere (Original Film)

Starring: Jamie Foxx, Michele Monaghan, Scoot McNairy, Dermot Mulroney, T.I., David Harbour, Gabrielle Union

 

Plot: A cop with a connection to the criminal underworld scours a nightclub in search of his kidnapped son.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Forgettable Actioner

 

Story: Sleepless starts in Las Vegas as dirty cops Vincent (Foxx) and his partner Sean (T.I.) are taking down their latest score from the mob in the city. Things don’t go as planned which brings in Internal Affairs pairing Bryant (Monaghan) and Dennison (Harbour) to look at the case.

Vincent’s day continues to get worse as he once again lets down his ex-wife Dena (Union) and his son Thomas (Johnson) before casino boss Rubino (Mulroney) has Thomas kidnapped, promising to hand him over to Novak (McNairy) the drug lord if the product isn’t returned in three-hours.

We are left to see how Vincent tries to clean up the mess he finds himself in, he must deal with the drug lord, the casino owner, the internal affairs agents and his angry ex-wife all in one night inside the casino.

 

Thoughts on Sleepless

 

Characters/PerformanceVincent is the dirty cop that has been stealing from criminals for his own personal gain, this has left his personal life in ruins and now he has one night to save his career and his relationship with his son. Bryant is Internal Affairs that has recently found herself assaulted with everyone trying to nurse her back into her job even though she is ready to return. Novak is a drug lord reluctantly working with casino boss, he is ruthless like you would expect him to be. Rubino is the casino who has everything but has dived into the drug world to keep his guest happy. The rest of the characters are also who you expect without being anything special.

Performance wise, Jamie Foxx is good enough in the leading role without being a great action star, with Michelle Monaghan doing a good job in here role, being the star of the film. Scoot McNairy gets to have a lot of fun in the villainous role which he always delivers in. some of the supporting roles are left questioning how capable the stars really are though. With Gabrielle Union doing all she can with the generic concerned mother that only moans a lot role.

StoryThe story is fine, it has twists and turns along the way as you must figure out who is good, bad, dirty or criminal all while seeing how a drug bust can go wrong. This does have plenty going on and if you blink you might miss a beat but otherwise it doesn’t leave too much to the imagination.

Action/CrimeThe action is always going to be hard to find anything new or original which is why the action turns out slightly flat. The crime world created is solid enough though.

SettingsNearly the whole film is set inside the casino which does show things happening near real time.

Final ThoughtsThis is fine action film, it isn’t great or bad it is just average.

 

Overall: Average film that is easy to watch but never pushes the boundaries.

Rating