film reel image

film reel image

Friday, May 7, 2021

Every Breath You Take 2021 * * Stars


"Family is all there is and you have a great one". That's a quote from 2021's Every Breath You Take. Whenever someone says something like that in a movie, you know they're being way too nice. They should have a label on their chest that says, "I'm the bad guy and I've got a hidden agenda".

Anyway, Casey Affleck stars in "Breath" and he gives his usual, Affleck-like performance (raw, drained, and acute). He's not the bad guy per se, he's just having a stifling bad week. His daughter won't talk to him, his wife makes him feel guilty constantly, he's buried in his notepad, and his psychiatrist license is about to be revoked. Hey, someone get this dude a beer stat. Or maybe a stiff drink at 80 proof.

Every Breath You Take for better or worse (I'll go with worse), is a choppy thriller with a dubious title. Put it this way, I'd rather listen to The Police's hit single circa 1983 than see "Breath" again. Sure "Breath" is atmospheric and sure it has an obsession with overhead shots of characters driving along scenic roads. But where's the "wow" moment after 105 chewed over minutes? I didn't see it and the abrupt, mano a mano ending didn't help things either.

A psychotic brother messes with the family of a shrink whose patient was his dead sister. That's the blueprinted plot of "Breath" and that's great. Do we as the audience care? Not really. Said brother is basically cray cray and has no real incitement for being cray cray. In fact, he's not really the brother but the boyfriend. "Breath's" director (Vaughn Stein) offers this twist and at the same time, he veers right into amateur hour. He needs to "breathe" deep and lament with whatever project he decides to do next. Hey, you could try comedy next time Vaughn. Rating: 2 stars.

Written by Jesse Burleson

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