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The Broken Hearts Club

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

A close-knit group of gay friends share the emotional roller coster of life, relationships, the death of friends, new beginnings, jealousy, fatherhood and professional success. At various stages of life's disarray, these young men share humorous and tragic relationships and always have each other to rely on.

After viewing the gay ensemble film The Broken Hearts Club--the subtitle of which helpfully points out that it's "a romantic comedy"--you might feel as if you've been offered a discussion conundrum not unlike the kind that Mike Myers's Linda "Coffee Talk" Richman would put forward: "The Broken Hearts Club is neither romantic nor comedic. Discuss." What it is, rather, is a gay male version of Steel Magnolias, right down to the funeral scene and hospital visit. While decidedly less melodramatic than that Southern chick flick, it still aspires to a kind of big-group love-in feeling that's only vaguely comic. And romance? Well, there's some somewhere, when the characters aren't carping about how the only thing they're good at is being gay. They all wrestle with their Big Issues--should Patrick (Ben Weber) donate sperm so his sister can have a baby with her lesbian lover? Will cynical Dennis (Timothy Olyphant) finally admit he loves just-out-of-the-closet Kevin (Andrew Keegan)? How will love-'em-and-leave-'em Cole (Dean Cain) feel when he's rejected by the closeted movie star?--but to little effect, despite some snappy one-liners and occasional keen observances of gay culture. Writer-director Greg Berlanti's screenplay still feels about two or three drafts away from completion, and when faced with stalling action, he opts for a montage set to one of many Carpenters' songs (covers, not the actual hits themselves). Kudos go to the acidic Weber for infusing what could have been a whiny character with a dry, intelligent wit, and the surprisingly charming Cain, who makes Cole someone you can't really hate too much despite all his faults--it would be like hating a puppy. If only all the characters were half as appealing. --Mark Englehart

Special Features

  • Deleted scenes with director and producer's commentary

Product Details

  • Actors: Timothy Olyphant, Dean Cain, Zach Braff, Ben Weber, Matt McGrath
  • Directors: Greg Berlanti
  • Writers: Greg Berlanti
  • Producers: Connie Dolph, Joseph Middleton, Julie Plec, Mickey Liddell, Sam Irvin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 6, 2001
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000560PU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,015 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Broken Hearts Club" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Charles Sutherland on July 29, 2005
Format: DVD
In some ways, this film reminded me of the sit-com "Friends" when I first watched it. It does have some significant differences, but it still centers on a group of people who are variously in and out of relationships with each other and outsiders, some of whom make it into the group, and others of whom do not.

One of the leading characters is Dennis, who is having a mid-life crisis of a sort, not quite sure he wants to continue the pick-up life, and not sure he can continue it given his advancing age. This is driven home by the situation of his birthday party, in which he finds an attraction to J. Crew Guy, a nickname invented by his friends to keep people from having to remember names. Cole, the "star" of the group of friends, has invited his own catch to the party, and the rest of the friends are seething with jealousy.

There are lots of wonderful little scenes and bit pieces here. Most of the friends go to the same hairdresser or stylist, and pour their hearts out to her while having their hair cut. There is a wonderful montage of clips of the various friends getting their hair cut, all talking to each other, save one man who goes to an actual therapist, and complains near the end that the rest of his friends get their hair cut while doing this.

The friends center on a particular restaurant, owned by Jack, played by John Mahoney (Frasier's father in the sit-com "Frasier"). Jack also sponsors a softball team, on which all of the friends play. Jack is a long-term partner of a man only really known as "purple guy", because he always dressed in purple. Jack suffers a heart-attack, and the friends become much more enlightened about the value of friendship, relationships, and permanent attachments in an often changing and unpredictable world.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By EDWARD on January 12, 2001
Format: DVD
Saw the movie and loved it, only a complete cynic wouldn't. Much more substantial than a movie of the week as some would have you believe. It's a romantic comedy and is as funny and moving as one would and should expect it to be. If you're tired of the heavy, depressing and gay themed movies - here's one that you will simply enjoy - a docudrama it doesn't pretend to be. The characters are all wonderful and at their present stage of life, their concerns, desires, hopes, fears etc. are true to who they are. In your lifetime you will have known atleast one if not all of these characters. For a comunity longing to see itself on the big screen, this may be a very small representation, but nonetheless a valid one. Does it provoke deep thoughts, Will you like it? Yes. If nothing else, by the end of the movie you'll be thinking as I did "thank God for my friends..." - it's message and true worth. Enjoy.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By R. Penola on March 31, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
Despite the many cliches you can see coming almost from the first frames of this small, ensemble comedy, this movie will win your heart. The screenplay, chock full of gay stuff we've heard and seen a million times before, slowly builds its case through its mostly appealing stable of characters, who actually have something significant to say. There are many funny moments, and the performances are uniformly superb, with a surprisingly deft turn by Dean Cain, easily the most glamorous member of the cast. The ruminations on the lack of real substance in the on-again off-again relationships of a tight group of L.A. gay men will strike a resonant chord, and their words often have the sting of truth, especially in the many edgy scenes between lovers who barely know each other. The covers of Carpenters hits work only intermittently, and this film would have been elevated greatly by the inclusion of some real Karen vocals, particularly since her voice is discussed early on, in a scene that sets up the basic emotional journey of the movie.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jason Davis on June 5, 2004
Format: DVD
... exactly what Gay culture and lifestyle is like in any major city and is funny, unsettling honest (in the way that Gay people hated AL PACINO's racey yet truthful "Cruising" 1981 - sorry boyz, this was 1981 Gay culture), and totally believable and witty. I have to say, that ignoring the AIDS issue, the 'drag' factor (for the most part), and showing that all Gay men are not effeminate, needy or unhappy and promiscous for lack of anything else makes it the one and only film I would show my Mother ... she see my life then; and that of my friends : honestly, and not buttered up like the posh unreality of WILL & GRACE or QUEER EYE (like any masculine Gay man acts or dresses like that! : plezzze!).
Honest, believable and totally a reflection of Gay culture in the last 10 years, with out all the 'false trimmings' media has perpetrated on the rest of us normal Gay people like the ones 'living' in this film.
Some may not like it, because it is TOO honest. That quite honestly is why I really DID love it.
Think of this as the late 2000 version of "Torch Song Trilogy" : times have change a tad of late, and this reflects it honestly like that othe movie did on 1988.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By "kierenseno" on September 4, 2002
Format: DVD
I suppose we can forgive all the West Hollywood steryotypes that populate this movie - after all they're only serving a higher purpose: portraying gay men's lives as something out of a soap opera. Nothing too removed from the average reality. Nothing too shocking. Something at times almost impossibly moving,
This is a film that touches you, whatever your sexuality is or might be. Unresolved personal issues carry the day, but they all seem to come together at the not entirely satisfying ending.
Also: spot on soundtrack!
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