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Breaking: A Powerful Acting Showcase for John BoyegaheroImage

Breaking: A Powerful Acting Showcase for John Boyega

8/3/2022 • 4 min read

Even after three STAR WARS movies and other high-profile titles, actor John Boyega is still looking for his true breakout role. Now, he may have it with a movie appropriately called BREAKING. Boyega stars as a military veteran who has been cut loose by Veterans Affairs. In order to train the public eye on his mistreatment by the government, he takes hostages in the bank, threatening to blow himself and the hostages up if his demands are not met.

The cast of BREAKING won raves when the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. The trailer positions it as a true acting showcase for Boyega. It's the sort of performance that will immediately win comparisons to Denzel Washington. Check out the footage below and read more about BREAKING.

Watch the Tense Breaking Trailer


That's a great trailer! We don't need the pullquote referencing DOG DAY AFTERNOON to make that connection quickly, because the focus here is so squarely on Boyega's frustrated character as he makes some very bad decisions. We hope for the best here with respect to his character, but that final line in the trailer — "how did it end?" — doesn't leave us all that confident.

The Breaking Cast Has Already Won Big Praise

When BREAKING debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2022, under the title 892, the movie won the Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast. With Nicole Beharie, Selenis Leyva, Connie Britton, Jeffrey Donovan, and Michael Kenneth Williams working alongside Boyega, it's easy to see how that award might have been decided. The trailer certainly positions this movie as one in which actors get to shine above all other elements.

Breaking Is Based on a True Story

In 2017, a 33-year old Marine veteran named ​​Brian Easley held up a bank in Atlanta. His story was originally chronicled by Aaron Gell in the military-oriented publication "Task & Purpose." (The title of Gell's original article might tell you more than you want to know before seeing the movie, but you can click here to read it if you'd like.)

Now, Abi Damaris Corbin, making his directorial debut, tells Easley's story. In addition to directing, Corbin co-wrote with Kwame Kwei-Armah. Their original title for the movie, by the way, is a reference to the missing $892 disability payment that pushed Easley to the poverty line and spurred his actions at the bank.

One of the Last Roles for Michael K. Williams

Prior to his death in September 2021, actor Michael K. Williams had completed two as-yet unreleased movies. BREAKING is one, while the other is a film called SURROUNDED. Since BREAKING is the first of the two to be set for release, we have one more Williams performance to look forward to even as we mourn the loss of a tremendous artist.


BREAKING opens on August 26.


All images courtesy of Bleecker Street.

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