Break Even

Break Even Movie Poster

Berlin-based Irish filmmaker Eoin Moore spent $35,000 to make this German drama. His Berlin Film School graduation project, it was a winner at the 1998 Munich Film Festival.

Influenced by Mike Leigh, Wong Kar-Wai, and Lars von Trier, Moore used an improvisational approach, running workshops for five weeks and then writing his script ten days before filming began. Construction worker Alex (Andreas Schmidt), paying child support to his ex-wife, poses as a cop to protect Bosnian prostitute Svetlana (Tamara Simunovic) from a pimp.

Svetlana is trying to raise money to reopen her mom's hair salon in Bosnia. Alex becomes a part of her life, but money problems worsen after Alex is caught stealing tools and given a week to reimburse. Alex begins remodeling the bathroom of hooker Ruth (Kathleen Gallego Zapata) but soon goes from her bathroom to her bedroom.

Digital video camera blow-up to 35mm. Special jury mention at the 1998 San Sebastian Film Festival's New Directors competition.


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