‘Breaking’ Banks on Tragic True Vet Story

Boyega’s richly physical performance overwhelms any narrative missteps.


The heart-wrenching drama Breaking features a moving performance by John Boyega as an Iraq War vet named Brian Brown-Easley, driven to a desperate act. As Chuck Wilson points out in his review, the film also includes fine acting by the late Michael K. Williams as the police negotiator trying to save Brown-Easley, a former Marine Corp lance corporal, after he walked into a Wells Fargo bank in an Atlanta suburb in July 2017 and handed the teller a note stating that he had a bomb in his backpack. Wilson writes, “Easley is not interested in cash from the teller’s drawer or loot from the vault. Instead, he demands a wire transfer into his Wells Fargo account from the Veterans Administration to cover a disability check derailed by red tape that the impoverished 33-year-old feels (with his entire being) is rightfully owed him. The amount? $892.34.”

The performances are strong and, as Wilson notes, the subject gets to the heart of many a vet’s dilemmas: “When you’re poor in America, you walk and walk, often right next to the freeway, and you never stop worrying about being able to put extra minutes on your phone.”

Click here for Wilson’s full review and to see the trailer. —VV editors




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