Junior Moreno is an ex-con struggling to get his life back. His brother Manny, the salutatorian of his high school, embodies the neighborhood’s hope. On the night of his graduation party, Manny faces a life-changing decision, while Junior tries to prevent his brother from becoming another casualty.
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The production values look terrible, as though nobody cared how the film should look like. But if you focus on the story itself, the series of events that dogged Junior's life, it's not a bad movie at all. That's why I'm giving this three stars.
Whatever happened to Eric Eason? Cinema verite from Washington Heights, brutally honest and realistically depicted, capturing many facets of a Latino community. The expected 'final act tragedy' might be a bit of an indie film cliche, but this remains an interesting neorealist work.
Plays out like a shoe-string budget adaptation of some story Junot Diaz never wrote. Performances are extremely strong, especially by Franky G. Although other reviews bash the shaky camerawork, to me, it felt like a perfect companion to the Junior's explosive temper. Soundtrack did feel extraneous though. From the start, film carries an atmosphere of impending doom that culminates in, well, you will see...
Really well acted and cast movie that lets you get to know its characters organically. Feels like a very driven short story. The hand-held camera work -- which moves wildly and doesn't always let you see enough -- is jarring but didn't make me like the movie any less.