Parents' Guide to

Break

By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Young dancers face challenges; language, drinking.

Movie NR 2018 96 minutes
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Break has a compelling cast going for it, but the performers can do little to rescue a script that's a retread of other dance and sports competition movies. Lucie trains hard, and tries new moves while an impatient coach barks at her failure to deliver, a tired scenario that could describe dozens of movies. As in other such fare, romance blooms unsurprisingly on the side. Only the French language and Paris setting might make this seem if not original at least somewhat exotic for an American audience.

Ouazani and Mischel are attractive and compelling together even if the story sometimes feels forced and overwrought. Will love conquer all? It's hard to say. Lucie's mother points out that she, too, failed to "save" the convict Max, just as Lucie is trying to do with the moody Vincent. On the dance side, for a movie focused on the power of freestyle movement, choreography feels repetitive and unoriginal, and surprisingly tame. With few exceptions, the dancers are male, competing in a testosterone-fueled frenzy, showing off stamina and endurance rather than artistry.

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