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  • Writer's pictureJames Rutherford

'The Broken Circle Breakdown': A Poignant Belgian Drama About Love, Loss and the Power of Music


Movie poster for The Broken Circle Breakdown (2012)

The Broken Circle Breakdown (2012) is a poignant and emotionally charged Belgian drama that delves into the complexities of love, loss, and the power of music. Set in the port city of Ghent, the storyline follows the passionate love affair between Elise (Veerle Baetens), a free-spirited tattoo artist, and Didier (Johan Heldenbergh), a talented bluegrass musician.


Elise and Didier's world takes a dramatic turn when their young daughter, Maybelle (Nell Cattrysse), is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. As they navigate the heart-wrenching reality of their child's deteriorating health, Elise and Didier's relationship is put to the ultimate test. The film examines how they cope with their grief—questioning their beliefs and the profound impact it has on their shared passion for music.


Based on the stage play of the same name by Johan Heldenbergh and Mieke Dobbels, and directed by Belgian filmmaker Felix Van Groeningen (Beautiful Boy, The Eight Mountains), The Broken Circle Breakdown is a stirring exploration of the fragility of life. With its masterful storytelling, remarkable performances and soul-stirring music, the film serves as a fearless expression of the complexities of love, the devastating effects of loss and the enduring power of art to mend shattered souls.

 

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