Breaking Point (1976/Fox)
C+ Sound: C+ Extras: C- Film: B-
Svenson is an ex-Marine/martial arts expert (in judo) who is ready to testify
against suspects in a brutal murder he witnessed. Unfortunately, the killers are connected to
organized crime and when they go after his family, he reaches his Breaking Point (1976) in Bob Clark’s
entry in the revenge crime cycle of the 1970s.
the original Walking Tall or Death Wish, Clark takes the Roger E.
Swaybill/Stanley Mann screenplay (based on Swaybill’s story) and tries to make
a more final, less reactionary, less formulaic film, though still offering the
same kind of brutality. The result is a
film that holds up better, does not seem like a time capsule and is more
intelligent. The late Clark gets to the
point and tells his story more efficiently and the result is more impact. It is definitely worth a look. Robert Culp also stars.
anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 image shows some age and wear, but is nicely
shot by Mark Champion, C.S.C., though the dark shots look a bit too dark. This is likely a late analog transfer
master. The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo and
Mono are about the same, with an interesting music score by David McLey “with a
digital PDP 11 computer” as Clark was working with a different crew for a
change. It is a change that works by
giving the film a variant feel from his other films at the time, yet does not
hold back the narrative. The only extras
are stills and a trailer. With Clark
gone, we’ll never get an audio commentary.
- Nicholas Sheffo