Sometimes a thief can steal your heart. Richard Gere gives "a breakthrough performance" (Time) as a rockin' 'n' rollin', hustlin' and bustlin' crook in a film about chasing after your dreams no matter how high the stakes.J... more »esse Lujack (Gere) is a smalltime car thief who loves livin', Jerry Lee Lewis and his Silver Surfer comic books. But most of all, Jesse loves Monica (Valerie Kaprisky), the sexy French architecture student he just met in Vegas. Determined to provide her with the good life, Jesse uses all his rockabilly charm to convince the resistant Monica to drop everything and join him on a trip to sunny Mexico. In a fire-red Caddy with the top down and the woman he loves finally at his side, Jesse feels on top of the world. But no matter how much rubber he burns, there's something that Jesse just can't outrun. As he races faster and faster away from his past and toward his dreams, Jesse must keep everything that's important to himespecially Monicaclose by his side...or risk losing them forever!« less
"Actually, I would argue that this is one of the greatest films ever made. Enough time has passed for us to get over the shock of McBride / Carson / Gere's desecration of that French classic (which was all about breaking taboos in the first place). Hopefully this re-release will bring this funny, passionate, beautiful film to a new generation of filmmakers and film buffs who heard somewhere that Tarantino actually prefers this version. He does, and he's right! Where the original was remote, cynical, and yes, pretentious (seen it lately?), this one is romantic, exciting, and intensely felt. It's a creative, complete reworking of the original material which manages to transpose the story from Paris to Los Angeles, substitute Eno and Glass and Jerry Lee Lewis for that anonymous cool jazz, replace Bogart with the Silver Surfer, etc. And it all works! It does all this without losing one iota of the dashing spirit that made the original so memorable, and yet like the few great remakes it's totally its own film. I'm telling you, folks, the McBride "Breathless" is the GREATEST!"
A great performance by Gere and an entertaining film.
John Peter O'connor | 10/09/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This film is a remake of Godard's "A Bout du Souffle" but that is more of a problem than a blessing for this film. Breathless is not good enough to cut it as a worthy US version of the original but, seen as a film it it's own right, it makes a lot more sense and it is entertaining to watch.Richard Gere plays Jesse Lujack, a small time criminal who just happens to kill a cop. He doesn't set out to do so, it just happens but this one act drags him into a trap which is, of course, of his own making.His flight from the police who are determined to nail the cop killer takes him back to student Monica Poiccard (Kapriski) an old girlfriend. To him, she was an important and significant part of his life but to her, he was just an interlude whom she never expected to see again but, in a kind of "what the heck" mood she takes up with him and his troubles.Gere really is doing a fine job here. The script favours him but nonetheless, he is totally convincing in this film He really is Lujack.However much he tries to prevent it, the ending is pretty much inevitable but on the way Gere and Kapriski have some laughs. They live for the moment and, essentially they do enjoy the moments despite the bigger picture and that is what this film is all about. It's good to watch and enjoy. It is not a polarising moment in cinema history but, if you can forget the film's origins and hope only for an entertaining movie, it will not let you down.If you like this film, I'd recommend "The Passenger" with Jack Nicholson and Maria Schneider. It shares the same theme of a woman taking up with a man in big trouble and it is a much better movie although it is a serious film and does not have the laughs of Breathless."
D. Roberts | Battle Creek, Michigan United States | 06/13/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"BREATHLESS is a remake of a 1961 French movie of the same name. Instead of taking place in Paris (like the original), it takes place in LA. Richard Gere does an imitation of James Dean, dresses in 1950s style clothes & loves 1950s cars. Oh, and his character (Jessie) is a car thief, so he enjoys stealing them even more than driving them.
In an ill-fated momentary lapse of reason, Jessie kills a policeman. This elevates him from small-time hoodlum to the top spot on the LAPD's most-wanted list. From there his luck goes from bad to worse.
Jessie is obsessed with a French girl (played by Valérie Kaprisky), the comic book SILVER SURFER and the music of Jerry Lee Lewis. Most of the scenes revolve around one of these facets. There is some intersting symbolism with the SILVER SURFER who may leave this dimension at any time, but stays behind due to true love. It is a nice metaphor for those who pay attention to the final scene in the film.
Perhaps the most unfortunately accurate part of the film is how Gere plays a guy who is an amoral jerk - and yet he STILL gets the girl. One would think the story unrealistic on this sector, but the opposite is true. Some of the most worthwhile women I've ever known have always ended up "gunning for" the biggest loser they could find.
The biggest selling point of this DVD, however, is Valérie Kaprisky. In a word, she is stunning. Even better is the fact that she has no qualms about walzting around nude in front of the camera.
If you're interested in an erotic thriller where the main character is not altogether likeable, this one may be worth checking out. The story won't take your breath away, but Valérie Kaprisky just might!"
Richard Gere is sensational
Oddur | Iceland | 03/01/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I loved Breathless the first time I saw it and I have watched it many, many times now. The main reason is Gere's performance. It may not be his best but it's his most original and spaced-out performance of his career. The movie itself is quite entertaining, but no masterpiece. It never takes itself too seriously and mostly depends on the charms of Gere to keep it going. The ending is the best part, where his character seems to have nowhere to go and everything is closing down on him, and his only answer is to escape to his fantasy world and of course; sing the opening lines to Jerry Lee Lewis's Breathless. Another plus is the music, for this is the only film I know of that has Presley's Suspicious Minds playing in the background."
A decadent, guilty pleasure.
Celeste M. Harmer | Clifton Heights, PA United States | 11/25/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This seems to be a movie people either absolutely love or absolutely hate. I lean toward the former camp. I would have given five stars, but the soft-porn proclivities of this film -- and Richard Gere's annoying character (who does have redeeming qualities) -- were reasons for the deduction.Any good girl who's ever been in love with Mr. Wrong (myself included!) will hold an appreciation for this movie. The central characters, Monica Poiccard (Kaprisky) and Jesse Lujack (Gere) are perfect in their diametric opposition to each other. Monica is an honors Architecture student at UCLA with a bright future ahead of her; Jesse is a small-time, smart-alec hood whose big ambition in life is to emulate his hero, the comic-book character Silver Surfer. While speeding through the desert, he is pulled over by and accidentally shoots and kills a cop. Needing a place to hide, Jesse pops back into Monica's life. He was merely a fling she'd had while on vacation in Las Vegas, but she was something much more to him. Jesse's lifestyle revolts and excites Monica at the same time, which is why she takes up with him as he drags her along with him on a high-energy run from the law.I consider this film to be one of my guilty pleasures. Despite its aforementioned drawbacks, it possesses a lush decadence that's quite entertaining. I recommend it to anyone who wants to indulge!"