Twilight Time Blu-ray: Breaking Away (1979)

Breaking Away 1979
Blu-ray Company Release: TwilightTime

Starring: Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid, Daniel Stern, Jackie Earle Haley, Barbara Berrie

Plot: Breaking Away (1979) is an utterly endearing coming-of-age story about a quartet of recent high school graduates. The group is coming to terms with their own outsider status and realizing that they won’t be able to depend on each other forever.

My Review and Thoughts:

Film: 4.5/5

Well, when I heard that Twilight Time was going to be releasing this as one of their picks of 3,000 Special Edition Units I was so utterly happy. I know I say that a lot with the releases of Twilight Time but they bring out so many films forgotten by time or over looked or not given the proper outlet that they so deserve and so here we go again. Another fantastic release. Another passionate Blu-ray. Another wonderful example of flawless outlets to give to the movie buff, lover and cinema nerd in us all. Breaking Away is a film that belongs in the art form of cinema history and Twilight Time has given it, the just due it deserves and I could not have asked for anything more.

Truly a wonderful often overlooked gem of cinema. All the actors gave extraordinary performances as down to earth believable characters. The movie itself ranges from friendship style comedy, coming of age drama and, coming into ones power and also the personal life and passion for a sport. I think it’s a wonderful personal drama between a group of guys, buddies and the exploration of the human soul through the sport of cycling and just plain everyday life. I thought the story telling was brilliant. 

Flawless acting by Dennis Christopher. I have always been a huge fan of his. I never understood why he never got the push and modern fame. He is an actor that deserves it and Breaking Away is one of those films that expresses his amazing talent of acting.

Amazing performances by all of the cast. A young crew of gifted performers that some have gone on to explore the world of acting in many other films such as Dennis Quaid. Always a treat. Starring in some of my favorite films, Enemy Mine, Dreamscape and Wyatt Earp. Breaking Away is one of his shining moments on film and he gives his personal understanding to the art of acting and movie making in this role. Also I have to pin point an actor that seems to vanish off the face of the earth at times or just appears in small parts here and there and then vanishes. In the year 2006 after a 13 year absence from acting, he popped up and gave an eye opening performance in the movie Little Children that leaves a lasting impression upon the diehard lover of cinema.  His character of Ronnie in Little Children is mind numbing, which I might add is one of the greatest films of all time. A movie that should be seen by anyone who defines themselves as a movie lover. Jackie Earle Haley is like a little turtle, he pops his head out every once in a while and is cast in some amazing films and then seems to go back in his shell and vanish. From Little Children to The Watchmen he is a talented and gifted actor in the excellence of the art of performing. He shined in his role in Breaking Away like each and every one of the actors. Daniel Stern also stars in Breaking Away and is also another performer that has been around and explored many styles of characters and personas in film, who can forget Home Alone. I have to bring up Breaking Away is Stern's very first acting role.

Breaking Away is a film that I often return to, so that I can experience these gifted performers.

Truly an amazing piece of cinema. An awesome way to tell a story through comedy, drama, sport and friendship as the main focus of those characters in their present day reality. The struggle and the ultimate emotional reality of buddies, relationship’s and the triumphant and passions detailed are perfect. Possibly one of the greatest inspiring films ever done on the plot and subject of experiencing each individual through a coming of age reality and the idea of four friends. I have often stated this as being one of the perfectly written films of cinema. I think the skill is in the writing and personal chemistry between each player. I think director Peter Yates let bled the very recesses of emotions in the roles. Yates directed a fine picture of friendship reality and the will of the mind and soul in the idea of an inspiring film mixing emotional comical friendship and cycling. The movie is like a life line, a journey of exploration and friendship.

Steve Tesich wrote a perfect story. Breaking Away was his first feature film script he had written for TV but this was his first feature length film. He aced it in so many ways. He brought a perfect inspiring and comical piece to the movie world. He was a truly gifted writer. This would not be his only cycling style story he wrote. He did write the movie American Flyers starring Kevin Costner. Sadly this much talented and amazing writer passed away at the young age of 52 from a heart attack. He left the movie world way before his time. He would join up and write another script for Peter Yates the much underrated Eyewitness. Also joining each other again where he wrote the script for Yates 1985 film Eleni which is another much underrated film starring Kate Nelligan and John Malkovich. Tesich wrote in a way that expressed life, emotions and reality. If you have never explored his films seek out this brilliant Twilight Time Blu-ray of Breaking Away, also experience his other amazing comedy drama 1981’s Four Friends. Tesich had such a way with words and crafted the story on page and allowing a top notch director to give that vision to the world in the amazing film Breaking Away.

Dennis Christopher is magical in this part. I laughed so hard in spots. A true winner of plot, acting and direction. The characters are flawless. The building up of the characters is what makes this movie shine in perfection. The movie was nominated for the Academy Awards in 1979. I felt Dennis Christopher should have won an Academy award for his acting in this movie. He did win a 1979 BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer. The movie was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, Supporting Actress, Best Song Score and Best Screenplay which it won for Script and rightly deserved it. It’s one of the great written pieces of cinema. The movie itself did win the Golden Globe Award for Best Film in a Comedy category.  

Peter Yates was a director that could give a solid film. He had away with crafting his performers in a solid atmosphere that seemed real life on screen. The way he directed gave everyday life a starring role. He made his films come to life. From the amazing crime action film Bullitt to the over the top fantasy science fiction Krull; he gave something fresh and unique to his films. Breaking Away is one of those shinning experiences of film brilliance.

Twilight Time has aced it again. A fresh, new blu-ray that I am happy to place on my shelf and is worthy to express as something flawless by a company that expresses the art of cinema and gives many outlets to films forgotten or over looked. Twilight Time is becoming to me one of the greatest companies to honor film in a way that it should be. Twilight Time’s Breaking Away Blu-ray is like an award gifted to all us movie lovers.

Audio/Video: 5/5

I hate to say the same thing every time I experience a Twilight Time Blu-ray but it’s the truth. They are the best at giving audio and video in a new crisp and amazing sound quality to their releases and Breaking Away is no different. Another shinning experience of ear candy and visual ecstasy.

VIDEO: 1080p High Definition / 1.85:1
AUDIO: English 1.0 DTS-HD MA

Extras: 4/5

Wowzers what a special treat us movie lovers received with this release. Not only the wonderful isolated score but you get one of the greatest Audio Commentary’s I have heard. I absolutely loved hearing Dennis Christopher and film expert and historian Julia Kirgo and Nick Redman talk about this film. I would buy it just for the commentary.  You also get the wonderful booklet I always look forward to by Film Historian Julia Kirgo. Always a wonderful read and one more plus to Twilight Time Blu-ray’s.

Special Features: Isolated Score Track / Audio Commentary with Actor Dennis Christopher, and Film Historians Julie Kirgo, and Nick Redman / Road to Adulthood / Academy Booster / Original Theatrical Trailer

Overall: 4.5/5

Beautiful, coming of age, laugh out loud hilarious at times and truly a poignant movie. I highly recommend seeing this, owning this and most of all sharing this flawless coming of age comedy drama. A true original film that will last the test of time as it ages. This is a film that does what it needs to do and that’s grabbing the viewer’s heart and mind. A must watch film. A must own Blu-ray from the master’s Twilight Time.


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