I would recommend it because it's the least memory-intensive approach, and you're potentially using a lot of memory already. (Best would of course be to read the file line-by-line, but since you can't do that, this is the next best thing I could come up with.)
As to the other, you didn't stipulate what you wanted to do with the records when you had them split, and I needed a dummy subroutine to show the outline right (and to note that your data is found in $1). Blame the chatterbox for the odd word choice. :-)
If God had meant us to fly, he would *never* have given us the railroads.