Sep 192021

Breakdown is a simple but effective suspense-thriller with an amiable performance from Kurt Russell showing his on-screen charisma with very little to work with in terms of character development.



— Paramount Presents #26 —

Genre(s): Suspense/Thriller, Action
Paramount| R – 93 min. – $24.99 | September 21, 2021

Date Published: 09/19/2021 | Author: The Movieman

Director: Jonathan Mostow
Writer(s): Jonathan Mostow (story), Jonathan Mostow and Sam Montgomery (screenplay)
Cast: Kurt Russell, J.T. Walsh, Kathleen Quinlan, M.C. Gainey, Jake Noseworthy, Rex Linn

Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Alternate Opening, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1

Audio: English (Dolby TrueHD 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.35
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 45.05 GB
Total Bitrate: 44.10 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A

Paramount Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 3¾/5

Plot Synopsis: Jeff Taylor (KURT RUSSELL) is headed toward a new life in California with his wife Amy (KATHLEEN QUINLAN). When their car dies on a remote highway, a seemingly helpful trucker (J.T. WALSH) offers Amy a ride to the local diner while Jeff waits with the car. Then Jeff discovers his vehicle was deliberately tampered with, and by the time he gets to the next town, his worst fears are about to come true.

Quick Hit Review: Movies like Breakdown have a simplicity that I general enjoy. It’s one of those suspense-filled yet still easy-going thrillers that are perfect to watch on a chilly/rainy Saturday night. There’s not a whole lot to the plot or the characters for that matter, just a regular guy doing extraordinary things to rescue his kidnapped wife. It does get ludicrous at times with Russell hanging on to the side of a speeding semi but I had a good enough time.

The film was co-scripted and directed by Jonathan Mostow who has had a pretty non-descript career, though his most prominent film was Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, a film with plenty of hype but the end result was subpar, although in fairness probably the better of the post T2 sequels, albeit still ill-advised. However his direction here wasn’t bad and the final sequence featured some great old school car stunt work.



This two-disc release, part of the Paramount Presents line (#26), comes with a front-opening slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy. This comes with a good amount of new bonus material.

Audio Commentary by Co-Screenwriter/Director Jonathan Mostow and Actor Kurt Russell. This new track recorded for this release is worth a listen, especially if you’ve checked out others Russell has done in the past. It’s informative providing some anecdotal stories from the locations.

Victory is Hers: Kathleen Quinlan on Breakdown (4:22) — New interview with Quinlan looks back on how she got the role and her work with Russell. Includes some behind-the-scenes footage.

A Brilliant Partnership: Martha De Laurentiis on Breakdown (8:18) is another new interview, this with the producer.

Alternate Opening (11:40) is an opening sequence that, if IMDb is correct, scrapped after it didn’t test very well. Nice to have it here. Part of this is an intro by Jonathan Mostow on why he didn’t like it. There is also an option to watch with Mostow’s commentary.

Theatrical Trailer (2:10)


VIDEO – 4½/5

Paramount releases Breakdown onto Blu-ray presented with a 2.35 widescreen aspect ratio and has been given a new 1080p high-definition transfer, which was culled from a 4K film scan. There’s no mention of any restoration work done however even so, the picture does look quite good, detail is fairly sharp and well defined, and colors seem to be nicely balanced throughout. The original film grain and noise is still retained, giving it a pretty theatrical experience. All in all, looks good for a movie going on 25 years old.

AUDIO – 4½/5

The movie comes with a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track. All in all it is an impressive lossless track with clear dialogue levels and some great bass coming out of the LFE channel during key moments, such as a car/truck chase during the finale. It’s nothing overly aggressive yet still notable. As a side, there is a score only option.


OVERALL – 3¾/5

Overall, Breakdown is a simple but effective suspense-thriller with an amiable performance from Kurt Russell showing his on-screen charisma with very little to work with in terms of character development. This is the kind of movie, which is fairly short, to watch on a rainy Saturday night.





Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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