- Format: NTSC
- Language: German
- Subtitles: English
- Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
- Number of discs: 1
- Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B009NI2XUK
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 549,709 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Breathing [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
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Top Customer Reviews
Breathing is the story of Roman Kogler, a 19-year-old inmate of a juvenile detention center where he has lived since he was 14 and killed a boy who had been bullying him. Roman was given up by his overwhelmed teenage mother soon after his birth (she had almost killed him to stop his crying) and has spent his whole life in orphanages and group homes, where the bullying incident occurred.
He is almost catatonic, with no idea how to relate to other human beings. He's like a wounded wild animal held in a cage, never looking anyone in the eye and almost never speaking; I didn't count, but I'd be surprised if he said more than 50 words in the whole movie. Inside the tortured, terrified shell is a sweet and gentle boy tired of being alone but with no idea how to come out; a chance encounter with an American girl on a train is especially touching and lovely.
Thomas Schubert, the totally inexperienced actor who plays him (never even in a school play, and went to the audition only because a friend he wanted to see was going) does it all with his eyes, his face, and his body language. To say it's a powerful performance is a pitifully inadequate understatement. He is amazing.
This is a very, very great movie, the first feature written and directed by Austrian actor Karl Markovics. It is quiet and unpredictable and deeply moving, with none of the cheap emotional manipulation, gut-wrenching melodrama and gratuitous plot twists I was afraid of after a lifetime of watching American movies. Breathing is beautiful, simple, powerful and profoundly satisfying.
He is told that without a probationer job, the likelihood of being granted parole is akin to a snowballs chance in hell. But he just can't seem to hold one down. Then he happens upon a job advert working for the municipal morgue in Vienna and is amazed when they take him on. This is something you have to have a strong stomach for, and one of the many allusions to the `breathing' in the title, is when he is told to breathe through his mouth; to avoid the stench of death. There are many references to breathing some subtle, others less so.
Then he has to deal with a corpse of a woman with his own surname and he gets to thinking about the past and his own mother who started his hapless life and he starts to look for that past.
This is one of those films that has you captivated but it is hard to explain why. There is loads to see and take in, but you have to do it yourself, nothing is sign posted and that is really good as it is treating the viewer as an adult. There are some scenes of death which make it look less dignified than passing wind in front of royalty, but that is life some profanity and mild nudity, but it is all done in a realistic and tasteful way.
Director Karl Morkovics (`The Counterfeiters') has created something touching in its simplicity and believable in its out of the ordinariness.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A young offender slowly starts to mature as he finds a job with a funeral service which prompts him to search for the mother who abandoned him. Read morePublished on 6 Aug. 2014 by It Stinks
Watching this film is like watching paint dry. All the settings are ugly, there are no likeable people in it, the handling of corpses seems gratuitous and one feels cheated by the... Read morePublished on 11 Jan. 2014 by Tony Heyes
I enjoyed this film. Especially the fleeting train scene. But I felt this film was far too distant. Although there was some equilibrium at the end, it wasn't as vivid as some other... Read morePublished on 8 Jan. 2014 by Joseph Merriman
A young man in a juvenile detention centre doesnt get on with anyone and seems to hate the world. He gets offered a job at the morgue where he gets on ok because of course he... Read morePublished on 8 Dec. 2013 by Fraz
like a lot of these films,the film information was better than the film itself, but if you don't watch you cannot comment.Published on 25 April 2013 by Chris Hayes
The lead character, Roman Kogler, in this film is portrayed wearing a deadpan face into which we learn to read his thoughts and emotions as he, at age 19, undergoes the last days... Read morePublished on 18 April 2013 by Dan Filson