Richard Gere has always been an actor people love or hate and his performance in Breathless made in 1983 certainly divided fans and critics in equal measure. A remake of sorts of art house French movie A Bout De Souffle, the film stars Gere as car thief Jesse Lujack who starts out stealing a Porsche and after a police chase in the desert accidentally shoots the policeman who was chasing him.
He escapes to L.A. and tries to get some cash owed to him and also to persuade a French ex girlfriend to escape with him to Mexico. As the film progresses, the police get closer to him, and the crimes start to escalate.
The film as mentioned was blasted by critics at the time and Lujack as a narcissistic, arrogant and unlikable character and its hard not to agree, even seeing it today. Directors such as Quentin Tarantino cited it as an influence and you can see patches of the film where that is obvious.
The problem is you need someone to root for and as Gere, as good as he is, is such a arse-hole of a person in the movie, its hard to be on his side. Throw in some raunchy sex scenes and a good soundtrack and you have an interesting but ultimately flawed film.
The Blu ray released by Second Sight has a very pleasing 1080p picture, it has a solid presentation even if the colours are a little subdued at times. Audio has a modest LPCM Mono track which sounds fine with the soundtrack coming across well. Extras include an interview with Valerie Kaprisky and critic Mark Kermode says why he loves the film so much.
FILM: 6.5 PICTURE: 7.5 AUDIO: 6 EXTRAS: 6