Broken English

Bomb Rating: 

New Zealand is apparently less like a country and more like what the World Wrestling Federation would be if it had a seat at the United Nations.

Since everything I know about New Zealand I learned from "Once Were Warriors" and this film, I have concluded the following:

1. Women should not get married in New Zealand because they either get beaten by their husbands or they get to watch their husbands beat their kids.
2. Every problem in New Zealand is resolved by somebody beating the crap out of somebody else.
3. New Zealand is apparently less like a country and more like what the World Wrestling Federation would be like if it had a seat at the United Nations.

Set amidst this chaos is director Gregor Nicholas' "Romeo and Juliet" love story. Nina (Aleksandra Vujcic) loves Eddie (Julian Arahanga). Eddie love Nina. There's only one problem: Nina is a Croatian émigré whose father, Ivan (Rade Serbedzija), is a nut case who beats the crap out of any boy who tries to play hide-the-salami with his daughters. He doesn't just slap them around either -- he breaks out the baseball bats and tries to slam their testicles right out of the ballpark.

Predictably enough, Ivan's daughters turn out to be the horniest chicks to ever walk the face of New Zealand. Horniness prompts Nina to shack up with Eddie. Horniness then produces a pregnancy; then a serious outburst by Ivan. No matter how you cut it, "Broken English" is just a weak excuse to tell the "Romeo and Juliet" story with people of different nationalities.

Those driven to this film by its NC-17 rating may want to take note: It's a scam. Nina and Eddie get busy like once, and even so, it's in the dark and you can't see a damn thing. The real reason this movie is rated NC-17 is that Ivan says something derogatory about the Pope. That tells you something about the world: Women can get raped, beaten and tortured in an R-rated film, but say something bad about the Pope and you're consigned to cinematic hell.

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