Breach (12A)

Film

Thrillers

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Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Time Out says

Fri Aug 24 2007

Every office has its secrets, but covert skulduggery becomes an issue of national security in the corridors of the FBI headquarters. Based on a notorious real-life case, this impressively grown-up blend of spy-movie suspense and probing character study begins with keen-as-mustard junior agent Eric O’Neill (Ryan Phillippe) getting the unlovely task of spying on his new boss, veteran Russian intelligence expert Robert Hanssen (Chris Cooper), to assess suspicions that he’s a sex pervert. As it turns out, Hanssen the devout Catholic has indeed been sharing videos of his kinky activities in the marital bed, but that’s not the least of the man’s contradictions: a loyal career officer, often abrasively critical of lax security standards, he’s also in the illicit pay of the Russians.

Phillippe delivers one of his more substantial performances as the blue-eyed boy terrified he’s going to screw up his first major assignment, yet Cooper simply owns this movie, reptilian and unknowable in a performance that’s an odds-on bet for Oscar attention. He’s well served too, by writer director Billy Ray, who looks as though he’s been studying his Jean-Pierre Melville, methodically taking us through the agency’s everyday routine to build nerve-shredding tension later on when the narrowest time window becomes available to search Hanssen’s office. As a thriller, a seemingly rather plain movie becomes gripping almost by stealth, yet there are broader issues at stake too, for the security services’ inability to ‘read’ a given individual not only dissolves the certainties essential for their work, it also challenges our own assumptions (on celluloid and in life) of the integrity of human character. Tense, fascinating, worthwhile.

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Release details

Rated:

12A

UK release:

Fri Aug 31, 2007

Duration:

110 mins

Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

4.4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|12
1 person listening
Technoguy

It's not in the same class as Shattered Glass his previous film and gets nowhere near The Conversation. because it sticks so closely to the true story literally it seems to run out of steam quite soon,despite Chris Cooper's inalienable right to act the role and Ryan Phillipe's sterling support. The film does capture the uneasy tension between Eric and Hansen as they size each other up and Hansen runs truth tests on Eric. Eric finds his mission to find out about Hansen's sexual deviancy is a ploy for his real mission: to help trap the biggest double agent in America's history,but he's got to be caught in the act of making a drop, otherwise their evidence will be deniable. The film doesn't really explain why a Catholic family man would betray his country in the way Hansen did. He does come to trust Eric but only after putting him and his wife through the severest of trials as a couple.

Technoguy

It's not in the same class as Shattered Glass his previous film and gets nowhere near The Conversation. because it sticks so closely to the true story literally it seems to run out of steam quite soon,despite Chris Cooper's inalienable right to act the role and Ryan Phillipe's sterling support. The film does capture the uneasy tension between Eric and Hansen as they size each other up and Hansen runs truth tests on Eric. Eric finds his mission to find out about Hansen's sexual deviancy is a ploy for his real mission: to help trap the biggest double agent in America's history,but he's got to be caught in the act of making a drop, otherwise their evidence will be deniable. The film doesn't really explain why a Catholic family man would betray his country in the way Hansen did. He does come to trust Eric but only after putting him and his wife through the severest of trials as a couple.

wolf72

I feel as though I have just wasted a small part of my life! This is the slowest and most unengaging film I have ever seen! Usually live and die by time out reviews but this one falls well short of the mark! It is POOR!

wolf72

I feel as though I have just wasted a small part of my life! This is the slowest and most unengaging film I have ever seen! Usually live and die by time out reviews but this one falls well short of the mark! It is POOR!

sally

Excellent. Sense of suspense held all the way throught he film, a rare achievement.

sally

Excellent. Sense of suspense held all the way throught he film, a rare achievement.

noriaga

wicked.amazing out of this world. cudnt beleive my eyezz!! heavy!! movie of the yr for me!. respect, noreen

noriaga

wicked.amazing out of this world. cudnt beleive my eyezz!! heavy!! movie of the yr for me!. respect, noreen

amy

i have never seen it, but it defiantly looks like one of my films! im going this week =]

amy

i have never seen it, but it defiantly looks like one of my films! im going this week =]