Breaking the Rules (1992)


Breaking the Rules (1992)

A cancer stricken man takes his two best friends whom he hasn't seen in a long time on a road trip. The two friends aren't talking to each other due to a bad fallout years ago. On the way they meet an attractive wild woman with a heart of gold.
IMDb   5.6 /10
TheMovieDb    5.8 /10
Director Neal Israel
Writer Paul W. Shapiro
Release Date1992-10-09
Runtime1h 40mins
GenreComedy, Drama
Content RatingPG-13 (PG-13)
CompanyManagement Company Entertainment Group (MCEG), Sterling Pictures
Phil Stepler
Kent Bateman
Kent Bateman
Mr. Stepler
Krista Tesreau
Krista Tesreau
Rob's Date
Mary Klinglitch
Redneck Woman
Jeff Dashnaw
Jeff Dashnaw
Redneck #1
Mark Rosenblatt
Mark Rosenblatt
Frank Wagner
Frank Wagner
Justice of the Peace
Manuel Pickett
Manuel Pickett
Minister in Arizona

Breaking the Rules (film)

Breaking the Rules is a 1992 American drama film directed by Neal Israel, executive produced by Larry A. Thompson, starring Jason Bateman, C. Thomas Howell, Jonathan Silverman and Annie Potts. Jason's father, Kent Bateman, has a role in the movie as well.


Phil (Jason Bateman) is a cancer-stricken man who tricks his two best friends, Gene (C. Thomas Howell) and Rob (Jonathan Silverman), whom he hasn't seen in a long time, to go on a road trip, by inviting them to a fake engagement party. This has the potential for problems because Gene once stole Rob's girlfriend. Phil gets them to be friends again. He tells them of his illness and all three decide to go to Los Angeles for Phil's dying wish: to be a contestant on Jeopardy! On the way there they meet an attractive wild woman with a heart of gold (Annie Potts).


  • Shawn Phelan as Young Phil Stepler
  • Jackey Vinson as Young Gene Michaels
  • Marty Belafsky as Young Rob Konigsberg
  • Jason Bateman as Phil Stepler
  • C. Thomas Howell as Gene Michaels
  • Jonathan Silverman as Rob Konigsberg
  • Kent Bateman as Mr. Stepler
  • Krista Tesreau as Rob's Date
  • Annie Potts as Mary Klinglitch
  • Frank Welker as Special Vocal Effects


Roger Ebert savaged the film in his contemporary review, damning its inauthentic script wherein "one appalling scene follows another". In an exasperated tone, he asked: "Was there no one to cry out, Stop this madness? No one to read the script and see that it was without sense or sensibility? No one to listen to the dialogue and observe that nobody in the world ever talked like this?"