Kyle Says Keep Your Mom Away From BREAKING IN This Weekend.

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FILM REVIEW: BREAKING IN

BY KYLE ARANGO

Breaking In is directed by James McTeigue and stars Gabrielle Union, Billy Burke, Richard Cabral, Ajiona Alexus, Levi Meaden, Seth Carr, and Jason George. It tells the story about a mother who must fight to protect her family when a home invasion happens. She must break back in and stop the criminals from tearing her family apart. The trailers for this movie have not been great and the tagline “Payback is a Mother” is awful. Could Breaking In be a solid action movie about a mother just in time for Mother’s Day? The answer is no. While Breaking In is nowhere near unwatchable, it is nothing you haven’t seen before. If you are looking for a different style home invasion movie, this film is not for you.

For starters, Breaking In is not a film I knew much about until recently. Its placement on the release schedule is smart considering this weekend is Mother’s Day. However, I wouldn’t let my mom anywhere near this film, she’s way better than it. It’s not completely awful, but it was just frustrating to watch. The set up doesn’t make much sense as they gloss over important details. A mother and her two children are going to their grandfather’s house who has just passed away because of a reason you see at the beginning of the film. That opening scene by the way makes the whole film not make sense when you think about it. Anyways, the family walks into four house robbers in the home and they hold the kid’s hostage while the mom must save them. This is the general premise and about as interesting as it gets.

First let’s start with the acting and there are both highlights and duds. Gabrielle Union is good as the main character. She is our protagonist and carries the film on her shoulders as well as she can. You can see that she was committed to this role and that it meant something to her. Makes sense when you see she also produced the film. Other performances I’ll praise are Ajiona Alexus and Seth Carr who play the kids. They act circles around some of the other performances and give light to an otherwise dim movie. Finally, Billy Burke is enjoyable as the leader of the criminals as he seems to be the only one who knows what movie he’s in. He makes his character sound so much smarter than he actually is. Now we get to his crew, and they are laughably bad. First there is Levi Meaden who looks as I this is his first time acting and has no idea what he is doing. Student films have better performances. There is also Richard Cabral who came off as the equivalent to a psychotic Luigi from Super Mario. His character was so ridiculous that people were laughing every time he spoke and instead of being terrifying, he was just sad. If Luigi tried acting, it would go about as bad as you think and that is exactly what happens with Richard Cabral.

While the acting was nothing special, the directing was at least serviceable. James McTeigue was great at making the audience feel tension throughout the film. He may have made it suspenseful at times where it made no sense, but he knows how to make us feel pressure. You feel for the kids when they are trying to sneak around and McTeigue puts you in their shoes. My biggest problem with the film however is the script. Not that it was bad, it is just the same story. You have seen this film a hundred times before and know exactly where it is going from the moment the action starts. Breaking In makes no attempt to do anything different or special and that is a disappointment. Even if they tried to do something different and it didn’t work, I would still give it more credit because at least they tried. Instead we get the same, ordinary home invasion movie that we have all seen.

To wrap it all up, Breaking In is a below average home invasion film that feels like a Lifetime film. Gabrielle Union is solid but is not enough to lift this film from being just another in the crowd. This isn’t the first time we have seen this film and will not be the last. Breaking In will be forgotten very quickly heading into the summer movie season and that’s a shame since there some good elements that are overshadowed by the bad. DO not take your mom to see Breaking In this weekend.

 

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