When the film opens, Skunk Cunningham (Eloise Laurence) is speaking with her only friend, Rick Buckley (Robert Emms), about how difficult it is to wash a car. Skunk turns around to leave, when Rick gets attacked by Bob Oswald (Roy Kinnear). A few minutes later, the cops arrive and arrest Rick for accusations of rape made by his Bob’s daughter, which turns out to be untrue.
Skunk’s teacher, Mike Kiernan (Cillian Murphy, Peaky Blinders), shows up to play cards with Skunk and her friend, Kasia (Zana Marjanovic). Skunk goes to Rick’s home to try and see him, but has no luck because his mother, Mrs. Buckley (Clare Burt), intervenes and refuses to let her see him.
Skunk takes off with her friends to try and be a normal eleven year old, when she arrives back home Rick is being arrested again. This time his charges are for assaulting his father, Mr. Murphy (Denis Lawson). Skunk is worried about Rick because she thinks the doctors are going to try and remove part of his brain.
Kaisa becomes upset, when she discovers that Mike does not want to marry her and have a baby. Skunk takes off with a new friend, Dillon (George Sargeant), who soon becomes her boyfriend even though she professes to be in love with Mike. They kiss to seal the deal and later head home.
Kaisa becomes on friendly terms with Skunk’s father, Archie, (Tim Roth), who has split with Skunk’s mother, Rachel. When Skunk finds out she becomes upset because Mike is her favorite teacher. Things are only going to continue to get worse for poor Skunk.
She is in school, when she is approached by Sunrise (Martha Bryant) who demands her to give her all of her money. Her mobile is broken, during the short scuffle. Skunk asks her father for a new one, but he refuses to buy her one.
Skunk is hanging out with Dillon and returns home late. Older Skunk (Lily James) is totally upset and gives her a few lickings. Skunk is a diabetic and routinely checks her glucose level. She is very diligent about taking her insulin and watching her diet, as well.
Skunk secretly goes to the hospital and sees Rick, who appears to be slightly drugged. He describes his insanity as being like a toxic cloud, but it appears to have left him now. When Skunk returns to school the next day, Sunrise and Susan (Rosalie Kosky) continue to bully her, during a basketball game in gym class. After school, they gang up on her again and beat her up, but Mike saves her and enforces Sunrise to attend after school detention. Mike escorts Skunk home and takes this opportunity to speak with Kaisa. He agrees to marry her and do whatever she wants to make her happy, but she refuses his offer, while telling him that she is in love with Archie.
Skunk catches her brother, Jed (Bill Milner), having sex with Susan. She promises not to tell, but does not understand why they even want to do it. The next day Mike is accused of having sex with Susan and she is pregnant. Even though Skunk knows the rumors are not true, she refuses to tell the truth because she made a promise to her brother. Mike is run out of town by the officials and parents, then Dillon shows up and tells her that he is moving away.
Rick is being released from the hospital, while Susan is being rushed to the hospital because she is apparently having a miscarriage. Rick becomes upset because the neighbors are not so welcoming, when he returns home. His mother tries to console him, but he accidentally pushes her down the stairs. When Mr. Buckley returns home Rick attacks him, as well. Skunk goes over to Rick’s house to check on him and she becomes his prisoner. She does not have her insulin so she becomes hypoglycemic.
Will Skunk’s father be able to save her from Rick’s grip of insanity? Will Mike be able to recover from the false allegations of rape and return to teaching?
Broken is a great little movie that revolves around a young girl growing up in a small town, where everyone nearly knows everyone. The one thing that I did find strange in this film is all of the rape allegations made by the two young girls, but this could be explained by lack parental supervision. Skunk is so innocent, pure, and unaware of any type of sexual emotion that stirs, within one’s soul, when they become older.
This film shows a young girl’s struggle to deal with a childhood illness. Throughout the film, she experiences friendship losses, sadness, and happiness. The same mixed feelings that almost everyone can relate to, when they were growing up. Thumbs up for young Eloise Laurence for her awesome performance as Skunk, as this is her debut. Tim Roth was the perfect actor to fill the role as Skunk’s father and Cillian Murphy never ceases to amaze me with his acting skills, as I truly love him in Peaky Blinders. This film deserves an 8 out of 10.