5.9/10
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5 user 4 critic

The Break (1997)

A Further Gesture (original title)
Dowd, who's IRA, escapes an Irish prison in a bloody jailbreak, making his way to New York City where he lives alone, avoids Irish hangouts, and works as a dishwasher. When a good deed gets... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sean Dowd
...
Tulio
Rosana Pastor ...
Monica
...
Richard
...
Paco
...
Scott
Frankie McCafferty ...
Danny
...
Tommy Breen
...
Liam
...
Joe
Roy Heaybeard ...
Food Lorry Driver
Toby Bradford ...
Charlie
...
Roisin
Robert Taylor ...
Visiting Room Prison Officer
B.J. Hogg ...
Albert
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Storyline

Dowd, who's IRA, escapes an Irish prison in a bloody jailbreak, making his way to New York City where he lives alone, avoids Irish hangouts, and works as a dishwasher. When a good deed gets him stabbed, one of the restaurant employees takes him in and finds him medical care. As Dowd recovers in the flat of Tulio and Tulio's sister Monica, he realizes that these Guatemalan exiles share his rebellious principles. When he learns they are planning a political assassination, he offers to help. His attraction to Monica contributes to his willingness to volunteer. However, the cops are closing in on him: can he make the hit, protect his new friends, and escape with Monica? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and some sexuality | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

20 February 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Break  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Connections

References Dr. Kildare (1961) See more »

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User Reviews

Stephen Rea at his intense best
4 September 2002 | by See all my reviews

Stephen Rea is at it again, with the IRA I mean, and the beginning prison break scene is non-stop action, which continues for the whole film. The violent breakout with his pal Richard (Brendan Gleesan) leads him to break all ties and land in NYC circa 1996. He gets a job washing dishes and works with Tulio (Alfred Molina), gets involved with his sister Monica (Rosana Pastor), and ends up helping them take out a Guatemalan death squad commander who's funded by the CIA.

Well I have to say this was a refreshing alternative film, a bit of underground New York, a bit of Leftist Latino bent, a bit of the Shamrock. Really I prefer this to the Crying Game. In that we have a real good first sequence with Forest Whittaker, the best actor of the film dies in the beginning, and then it's all anti-climax. Here we get the unique mixing of an Irish-Guatemalan relationship, a sleazy NYC hotel sequence, the Midnight Cowboy type alienation of a man alone in New York, and the great Alfred Molina (We've seen him as an Iranian, a Greek,now a Guatemalan...and he's British to boot.)

So overlook the flaws of the film and enjoy it for what it is. The only real flaws are that some things are disturbingly unexplained: Why was Rea a prisoner to begin with, The Guatemalan Death squad thing in the post-cold war Clinton era, and what was up with that chick in the hotel?! Finally, does Stephen Rea remind you of Bob Geldof in The Wall or what!


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