Combustible Celluloid

Broken (2005)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

What Is Broken?

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Buy Broken on DVD.

This "pocket thriller" by Alex Ferrari reveals a talent not quite yet developed but willing; his visual sense is way ahead of his storytelling skills. The story involves a mysterious kidnapping, in which a girl is snatched from her kitchen by a band of exotic villains. In a darkened warehouse, our lead villain preens and taunts and plays a harmonica, tormenting his prey until a masked hero turns up and saves her. The hero unmasks himself at one point with a great flourish, and I got the impression that I was supposed to know who he was. Of course, a big shootout follows, as well as a "surprise" ending that's not very surprising. The actors are good enough to overcome some of the stale dialogue, and Ferrari keeps things alive with his inventive framing, though he's a bit too eager during the faster sequences, and he opts for jumble instead of clarity. The opening and closing title sequences, too, are headache inducing; they use all the tricks on Apple's Final Cut Pro, causing the picture to twitch, jump and wriggle like a TV station with bad reception.

DVD Details: The DVD, for sale at, comes a bunch of special features, and many helpful tips for aspiring filmmakers.

Starring: Samantha Jane Polay, Paul Gordon, Amber Crawford, Derek Evans, Tony Gomez, Jose Luis Navas, Danilo Begovic, Stephan Morris, Ruben Gomez, Ken Robkin, Eric Townsend
Written by: Jorge F. Rodriguez, based on a story by Alex Ferrari
Directed by: Alex Ferrari
MPAA Rating: NR
Running Time: 20 minutes
Date: July 24, 2005

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