Your parents teach us right from wrong. What if your parents aren’t around? What if we’re molded from something evil instead? In Vidhu Vinod Chopra‘s new film BROKEN HORSES we meet two very different brothers at a pinnacle time in their life. When a manipulative man strolls into their lives, each brother takes a path of his own. 15 years down the road, simple minded and gentle soul Buddy works and does a little too well for himself, while younger brother Jake, now living in the city, is the successful music prodigy from his youth. Buddy reaches out to the newly engaged Jake to give him his wedding gift. Jake is hesitant to return to his desolate, Mexican border hometown, but understands that the love of his brother wills him to do so. Upon arrival, he learns that Buddy is being used as a deadly pawn in a drug lord’s chess match. Jake has no choice but to dedicate himself to saving his brother.
The script takes some truly unexpected turns. I was constantly on my toes, especially emotionally. This engrossing story is only amplified by the stunning character development by Chopra’s writing and the outstanding and moving performances by Anton Yelchin and Chris Marquette as Jake and Buddy. Yelchin, in yet another film in a long line for 2015, plays a caring and protective role. It’s slightly more challenging than his usual boyish, all American vibe. Vincent D’Onofrio is manic in the role of evil puppeteer, Julius. There is very carefully crafted back story that we only get a glimpse of, and frankly it’s just enough.The profoundly magnificent acting award, hands down, goes to Chris Marquette. There is a fine line when portraying a person that is not of average cognitive function . It can so easily read disingenuous and forced. Marquette gives us a performance of a career as Buddy. Every beat is perfection. This is one that must not be overlooked. Even if the film were not as great as is, Marquette blows everything out of the water. Broken Horses is enchanting and thrilling all in one. A game of sick manipulation is slowly built into a war for the soul. The acting is top notch and the scenery is breathtaking. Heart-pounding and gut-wrenching, Broken Horses is a story of undying love and devotion that will resonate with everyone.
Synopsis: Having left town as a child after the death of his father, young music prodigy, Jacob Heckum (Anton Yelchin), returns to his desolate hometown after years only to discover that Buddy (Chris Marquette), the child-like brother he left behind now works for a drug gang. The gang’s ruthless leader (Vincent has twisted his simple mind and manipulated him into a killer… a surrogate son who blindly does as he is told. He is unable to convince Buddy to leave his new fraternity. Drowned in guilt for having abandoned him, Jacob quickly realizes the only way to save Buddy is from the inside out.
BROKEN HORSES comes to theaters in limited release Friday, April 10th