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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bleak, Violent, Compelling and Utterly Brilliant
Skunk is eleven years old when she sees one of her neighbours attack another one for apparently no reason. The attacker is the father of three daughters `The Oswald's' and the boy he attacks is the son of the Buckley family and he has `special needs'. Skunk (Eloise Laurence)is the daughter of a local solicitor Archie played by Tim Roth, he has a sort of maid who looks...
Published 13 months ago by Tommy Dooley

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting film
Got mixed reviews from the group that watched it with me. Definitely a touchy, feely sort of film and can be a bit naive. If you like Mike Leigh, you will probably like this and accept its shortcomings. Worth a watch, I think.
Published 7 months ago by Mrs. S. J. Reilly


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bleak, Violent, Compelling and Utterly Brilliant, 7 Aug 2013
By 
Tommy Dooley (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
Skunk is eleven years old when she sees one of her neighbours attack another one for apparently no reason. The attacker is the father of three daughters `The Oswald's' and the boy he attacks is the son of the Buckley family and he has `special needs'. Skunk (Eloise Laurence)is the daughter of a local solicitor Archie played by Tim Roth, he has a sort of maid who looks after Skunk and her brother, she is having an on/off affair with friend of the family and newly qualified teacher Mike Kiernan played by Cillian Murphy.

Mike is soon to start teaching at Skunks school adding a new dimension to their relationship. She has also met a young boy and starts to realise people are not all lightness and light. Meanwhile the Oswald girls are either bullying others, causing violence or being generally unpleasant with their mentally violent father only a step behind to dole out what he sees as street justice. As the lies mount, so does the pressure and an inevitable clash that had me guessing right up until the last.

This is a hard film to watch in places, the violence is visceral, you really feel that they are doing it and the acting is superb. Rory Kinnear as Mr Oswald is just amazingly believable as is Cillian Murphy, but actually everyone of the actors do a brilliant job in what must have been some very difficult scenes to get right. It only lasts for ninety minutes and I said `wow' when it ended, this is the debut directorial venture for actor Rufus Norris and he must have picked up a heck of a lot of tips when he was being directed as he does such an amazing job. I sometimes wonder if I am being generous when I give five stars but in this case it was no competition, easily one of the most engrossing films I have seen for a while - highly recommended indeed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One Lie, 1 Mar 2014
By 
prisrob "pris," (New England USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
This film is a peek into the bi-polar reality of today's society. Filmed in the UK, we follow a young girl, Eloise Laurence, as she observes the life around her. She lives in a cul-de-sac of three families, all of them are Broken. One family across the street has a brain damaged son that the parents have no idea how to handle, next door a man whose wife died and left him with three young daughters, all self absorbed and start the lie that ends in tragedy. 'Skunk' as she is known, the 11 year old, lives with her father and brother. Her mother left home when she was small. They have an Au pair, a young attractive woman who lives with them. She is involved with a young man they all like, but that falls to pieces when, Martin, the young man becomes a commitment phobe.

One lie starts the process of violence, arrests, commitment to a mental institution and then great tragedy. Throughout this process, Skunk is trying to take it all, deal with a new school, a new friend and the lives of those around her falling apart. At times the film seemed too much. Too much for these three families, do they all have to go through life's turmoils and troubles, does no one get a break? The writing is superb, the acting top notch. Tom Roth plays Skunk's father, a therapist of sorts, it seems he needed to start with himself, his family, then the neighbors.

If this is a microcosmic of our society, we certainly need help. A good start is for parents and children to start with a trusting, loving relationship. This film can be pretty gruesome in parts, violent and emotionally difficult to take. Use some caution, we are all broken, and this film magnifies all of us.

Recommended. prisrob 03-01-14
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gritty drama with excellent acting, 25 July 2013
By 
David H J Ashdown (Wales) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
A brilliant drama that starts when a girl of about 11 years of age witnesses a violent attack on an adult simple minded son of a neighbour by the thuggish father of three feral teenaged girls who also live in the cul de sac. At various times during the drama an event occurs and the next scene shows the events leading up to what happened, this is a very good technique to drive home the point the director is trying to make and makes the effect all the more real. The main thought I was left with afterwards was what a devastating effect a single family can have on all those who leave nearby. All the actors were superb as was the direction.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 9 Feb 2014
By 
Lincs Reader (Lincolnshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
Broken is adapted from the novel of the same name by Daniel Clay. The novel is one of my all-time favourite books, and often I am wary of watching film adaptations, just in case they ruin the original story.

I was not disappointed by the film version of Broken in the slightest. Although there are a few minor changes, these fit well. The setting of the film is London, whereas the novel is based in Southampton, but again, this does work very well.

Skunk, the lead character is expertly played by newcomer Eloise Laurence whilst her Dad is played by well-established (and a favourite of mine) Tim Roth. Some genius casting here - these actors have taken two characters and completely made them their own.

The film opens with a breath-takingly violent scene, that sets the pace of the whole story. The gritty truth of life on an inner-city estate, and the difficulties for young people today are expertly conveyed.

An excellent film, and one I would recommend highly
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars not for the faint hearted., 25 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
This excellent British film is not for the faint hearted. Set in a culdisac in an English town, three very different families, a widowed father with three out of control daughters, an older couple with a mentally damaged young adult son, and a single father with a teenage son and pre teen daughter.
A lie leads to a cruel beating, and things rapidly spiral out of control.
Excellent performance by Rory Kinear, and Tim Roth as the lone Fathers struggling to cope. A fine, delicate portrayal of the innocent, damaged Rick, from Robert Emms, and a wonderful debut from young Eloise Laurence, make this a film not to be missed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a stunning film, 23 Mar 2014
By 
G. Cole (uk) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
the best film I have seen in a long time gripping from the start and you really care about the characters (well most of them some your not really supposed to be rooting for) well shot (without the director trying to show off) great story, the fact when I watched this I was actually talking to the film shows how it really grabs you in. everything is done well. a perfect film
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great and powerful Brit-flick, 11 July 2013
This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
British cinema does best when it doesn't try and outdo Hollywood. Here we see a simple tale of three families in the same street, all intertwining yet slowly falling apart for different reasons.

`Broken' is a drama and, like all films that try to emulate real life (as opposed to giant talking robots and hordes of flesh-eating zombies), it contains a mixture of the general ingredients you find in your own day to day life, i.e. humour, emotion, happiness, sadness and conflict.

Cillian Murphy shares top billing with Tim Roth, but it's Roth who, combined with his on-screen daughter `Skunk' steals every scene, as they're one of the most believable father/daughter combination ever captured on film.

I won't go into too much detail regarding the plot, as you're only going to get the one chance to see it and not know what's coming next. But, if you sit down to this one, you should laugh and cry with the highs and lows of these people's lives.

I loved it - so much so that I couldn't believe anyone could not like it. Yet, it does seem to have attracted some negative criticism - mainly that it's too `melodramatic.' Maybe it does try to combine too many devastating events into a short space of time, but hasn't Eastenders been doing that for years?

If you're in the mood for a drama that is equally heart-warming as it is heart-wrenching, then give this one a go.

(probably more a 4.5 / 5, but I'm leaning towards generous)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars utterly utterly brilliant, 24 Aug 2014
This review is from: Broken (Blu-ray)
This is what the British film industry is all about. Small films, with a well chosen cast who can actually act, and fantastic scripts. This movie is a thought provoking, edge of you seat at times, emotional rollercoaster with random laughs. A must see movie
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5.0 out of 5 stars Quality!, 28 May 2014
This review is from: Broken (Amazon Instant Video)
Never a dull day on this cul-de-sac! Eloise Laurence is fab as the wise beyond her years Skunk in this gritty drama full of well sketched characters. Beautifully economic in its storytelling and editing with some effective multiple-perspective views of key moments. Loved the way it kept many threads of a multi dimensional narrative rolling at once and although it was tragic and violent there was always hope and warmth close to the surface. Proper British drama in the Loach/Meadows vein (if a bit more middle class)!
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5.0 out of 5 stars How do our lives intertwine, 5 April 2014
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This review is from: Broken [DVD] (DVD)
Ever wondered what goes on in suburban Britian. Could this be any street? Cillian Murhh has a supporting role as a man finally growing up to late
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Broken [Blu-ray]
Broken [Blu-ray] by Rufus Norris (Blu-ray - 2013)
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