Movie Reviews: Breach
Breach is the story of former FBI counterintelligence agent Robert Hanssen, now serving a life sentence for selling secrets to Russia for more than 20 years -- a story that occupied the front pages of newspapers and the first minutes of TV newscasts for days after he was arrested in 2001. Nevertheless, writes Manohla Dargis in the New York Times, the story works as "a thriller that manages to excite and unnerve despite our knowing the ending." The film is receiving almost universally solid reviews. Kenneth Turan writes these words in his opening paragraph in the Los Angeles Times: "Filled with tension, deception and bravura acting, Breach is a crackling tale of real-life espionage that doubles as a compelling psychological drama. Its core is not the minutiae of spying but the push-pull complexities of intricate human relationships, and in Ryan Phillippe, Laura Linney and especially the formidable Chris Cooper, it has the cast to bring it all intensely alive." Lou Lumenick in the New York Post observes: "Though it's being dumped in the wastelands in February, Breach is better than many of the pack of so-called prestige movies that were released at the end of last year." There are a few critics who breach the general praise. Rick Groen in the Toronto Globe and Mail comments: "There's only one reason to see Breach, and his name is Chris Cooper, who delivers a performance so magnificently creepy, so oozing in snake oil, that you quit the theatre feeling simultaneously soiled and bewitched. Alas, what he delivers it into is a complete and utter void."