The Breaking Point 1950
If you know Hemingway’s novel, it doesn’t take long before you realize that The Breaking Point is the most faithful screen adaptation, and what few key alterations Curtiz and his screenwriters made have actually created a stronger story.
The result is a tense, fast paced, atmospheric and highly watchable thriller, even a neglected little gem.

In the Curtiz version, John Garfield plays Harry Morgan, the owner of a charter boat who is having trouble making enough money to support his wife and daughters. When he accepts a charter to take a man named Hannagan and his mistress to Mexico to do some fishing, his client skips out without paying, leaving Morgan with Hannagan's girlfriend Lenora (Patricia Neal), and a docking fee he can't pay. In order to make enough money to get home, Morgan reluctantly agrees to smuggle Chinese people into the United States, but the Coast Guard finds out about it and impounds his boat. The situation becomes increasingly desperate for Morgan as a gang of crooks blackmails him and kills his first mate, forcing him into a fateful confrontation.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Cast: John Garfield, Patricia Neal, Phyllis Thaxter
Country: USA
Genre: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller

BD50, DVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC 4:3 | 01:37:36 | 37.2 Gb, 7.03 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: English


Alan K.Rode - in this new video interview, biographer and film historian Alan K. Rode (Michael Curtiz: A Life in Film) discusses Michael Curtiz's incredibly diverse body of work, his professional relationship with Warner Bros., the evolution of his style (with some great information about some popular but false myths), the production history of The Breaking Point, and John Garfield's career. The interview was conducted exclusively for Criterion in 2017. In English, not subtitled. (22 min, 1080p).

Fluid Style - in this new video essay, filmmakers Tony Zhou and Taylor Ramos (Every Frame a Painting) discuss the visual style of The Breaking Point, as well as some of the similarities and differences between Ernest Hemingway's novel To Have and Have Not and Ranald MacDougall's script for the film. The essay was created exclusively for Criterion in 2017. In English, not subtitled. (10 min, 1080p).

On John Garfield - in this brand new featurette, actress Julie Garfield, daughter of John Garfield, discusses her father's acting career, his political activism, and his contribution to The Breaking Point. In English, not subtitled. (17 min, 1080p).

Ernest Hemingway's House - presented here is a report from an archival episode of NBC's Today show which was filmed at the Key West, Florida, home of Ernest Hemingway a year and a half after his death. The report was broadcast on December 19, 1962. In English, not subtitled. (5 min, 1080i).

Trailer - an exclusive restored trailer for The Breaking Point. In English, not subtitled. (3 min, 1080p).