Poignant and riveting Brake provides the excitement of a thrill ride now on Blu-ray disc. The fast paced intrigue, believable plot and mysterious circumstances of the film kept me glued to the screen. If you like action that makes you gasp for breath then pick up a copy of Brake.
The film opens with Secret Service agent Jeremy Reins (Stephen Dorff) locked in a box that’s mounted in the trunk of a vehicle. Perplexed as to why he’s in this situation, Reins starts to look for clues while the vehicle moves in traffic. With his panic increasing, all of a sudden he hears a familiar voice of a man coming from a communication device presumably in the same predicament. The two converse trying to figure out what is happening to them. When a third voice, that of the driver of the vehicle, starts to question Reins on the whereabouts of a secret hiding place involving the federal government the stress level rises.
The terrorist plot grabs the viewer instantly. After all who would like to be trapped in the trunk of a car speeding down the highway with some lunatic in command. As the film gets claustrophobic and Reins starts to react to various violent attempts on his life, my fascination turned into concern for the captive’s life.
Making the film very realistic Director Gabe Torres (TV’s Unsolved Mysteries) keeps his camera close up to his subject inside the trunk giving the viewer a feeling of the cramped confines of the entrapment. As he starts to add torture to Reins while he’s bouncing and shaking from side to side the movie gets panicky. His ability to work with the trapped subject to show how he rationalizes each situation thrown at him keeps the film from becoming boring.
Stephen Dorff takes on this very difficult role and nails it. The nerve-racking confines of the small space, terrifying threats and constant punishment the character has to take is tough enough for most actors and Dorff plays Reins perfectly. It’s his commitment to the role that makes the film work and it’s a win, win for the audience.
The Blu-ray disc has some very good special features.
- Director’s Commentary- Turn this feature on after you have seen the film and run some scenes again. Torres gives a great rundown of the difficult filming process while explaining his reasons for most of his shots.
- Inside the Box: Making Brake- Director Torres goes over the making of Brake calling it Die Hard in a trunk. Interviews with Stephen Dorff, writer Tim Mannion, Producer James Walker and James Mathers director of photography walk you though most of the filmmaking process.
- Music Video- This is a unique music video that shows composer Brian Tyler making the soundtrack to the film. Playing all the instruments and adding sound effects using a car’s motor and parts, the music becomes haunting for the intriguing action thriller Brake.
Brake has not been rated by the MPAA but contains violence, drugs and language. The confined space that is depicted in the film may give some people a claustrophobic feeling, but for me it made Brake even more thrilling.
I played the movie on my big screen and the quality of the Blu-ray’s video and sound are excellent. Being my system has HD 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen with my player having the Blu-ray format the movie filled the whole screen, colors bright and speakers blasting.
FINAL ANALYSIS: An unusual thriller with a very good plot.
Specifications and additional film information:
- Cast: Stephen Dorff, Chyler Leigh and Tom Berenger.
- Directed by: Gabe Torres
- MPAA Rating: Unrated
- Genre: Action, Thriller
- Running Time: 1 hr 31 minutes
- Street Date: July 24, 2012
- Original Theatrical Release Date: March 23, 2012
- Language: English
- Format: Blu-ray
- Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
- Audio: 5.1 DTS Master Audio
- Video: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
- Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
- Number of Discs: 1
- Distributed by: IFC Films