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Breakdown (Blu-ray) review

Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« on: September 23, 2021, 02:57:24 PM »


Studio: Paramount
Release Date: September 21, 2021
Rating: G
Film: 4/5

Plot
Kurt Russell is Jeff Taylor, headed toward a new life in California with his wife Amy (Kathleen Quinlan). When their car dies on a remote highway, a seemingly helpful trucker (J.T. Walsh) offers Amy a ride to the local diner while Jeff waits with the car. Then Jeff discovers his vehicle was deliberately tampered with, and by the time he gets to the next town, his worst fears are about to come true.

My Thoughts
It’s been a while since I watched a compelling thriller, so I was looking forward to the 26th entry in the Paramount Presents series to get my heart beating fast. Somehow, I had missed this one back in 1997 or I’d forgotten it with my advanced age. The story isn’t overly complex—a couple driving across country breaks down, they accept help from a stranger, things go off the deep end, and the hero must settle matters despite the long odds of success.

What makes this film work is the cast. Russell is great as the lead and his chemistry with Quinlan is genuine, but it’s J.T. Walsh’s villain that puts the icing on the cake. I ended up being pleasantly surprised throughout the movie and it did a great job of drawing me in.

The presentation is very good for a film nearing 25 years with good detail, solid colors, and revealing shadows. It was mastered in 4K and it shows. The lossless track was more enveloping than expected and utilized every speaker in the room. Furthermore, the imaging was spot on as pans move seamlessly from speaker to speaker.


Video 4.5/5

Audio 4.5/5 (Dolby TrueHD 5.1)

Special Features:

  • Commentary by director Jonathan Mostow and Kurt Russell
  • Filmmaker Focus: Director Jonathan Mostow on Breakdown
  • Victory Is Hers - Kathleen Quinlan on Breakdown                   
  • A Brilliant Partnership - Martha De Laurentiis on Breakdown
  • Alternate Opening
  • Alternate Opening with commentary by director Jonathan Mostow
  • Isolated Score
  • Theatrical Trailers                                       
    • Breakdown                                   
    • Kiss the Girls                                 
    • Hard Rain                         




Conclusion
Even though the film is nearly 25 years old, the story doesn’t feel dated or out of touch in any way. The presentation is what we’ve come to expect from the Paramount Presents series and if you’re looking for a good thriller to get your heart racing, be sure to check this one out.


Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS2000 4K Ultra High-Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Portrait Displays CalMAN color calibration software & C6-HDR Meter from Portrait Displays)
Stewart Filmscreen - Firehawk 88” 16x9 Fixed Screen
Trinnov Altitude 16 Audio/Video Processor
ATI AT527NC Powering Bed Channels
ATI AT524NC Powering Atmos Speakers
Panasonic DP-UB820 Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
System Controller: URC MX-990
M&K S-150 THX Ultra (R-C-L Speakers)
M&K SS-150 x4 (Surround Speakers)
Atlantic Technology IC6-OBA x 4 Overhead Speakers
SVS PC-Ultra Cylinder Subwoofer
HSU VTF-15H MK2 Subwoofer
JL Audio Dominion F110 Subwoofer x 2
Mini DSP HD controlling all subwoofers
Audioquest and Monoprice - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
PureAV PF60 Power Conditioner
Blu-ray Reviewer / Technical Writer
Sound & Vision Magazine

AVSCraig

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Re: Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2021, 08:22:06 AM »
I love thrillers - I need to check this out. Thanks!
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bmoney

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Re: Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2021, 10:05:49 AM »
Another sleeper I’ll add to the queue 
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Re: Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2021, 10:15:37 AM »
Greetings,

Nice review Dave and, I am in agreement across the board. I am a fan and have been since seeing it years ago. One of those "forgotten" flicks that is so worth the time.


Regards,

Re: Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2021, 06:28:52 PM »
Thanks for alerting me to this movie, Dave - I had not seen it before.  I actually found it for free on Paramount+ (well, free with the monthly subscription that is), and really enjoyed it.  Picture quality was decent, though I'm sure not up to the Disc standard, but at no cost I thought it was reasonable.

Incredibly suspenseful - I was on the edge of my seat throughout the movie - not a moment to relax!

Re: Breakdown (Blu-ray) review
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2021, 08:02:52 PM »
Thanks for alerting me to this movie, Dave - I had not seen it before.  I actually found it for free on Paramount+ (well, free with the monthly subscription that is), and really enjoyed it.  Picture quality was decent, though I'm sure not up to the Disc standard, but at no cost I thought it was reasonable.

Incredibly suspenseful - I was on the edge of my seat throughout the movie - not a moment to relax!
It does get the heart racing, that's for sure!
Blu-ray Reviewer / Technical Writer
Sound & Vision Magazine

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