Terry Noonan returns home to New York's Hells Kitchen after a ten year absence. He soon hooks up with childhood pal Jackie who is involved in the Irish mob run by his brother Frankie. Terry... See full summary »
Chicago crime kid Mick O'Brien has been sent to a juvenile prison for vehicular manslaughter. Most unfortunately, the person he kills is the kid brother of his nemesis Paco Moreno, who vows revenge by raping Mick's girlfriend. Paco is caught and sent to the same prison where he re-works his revenge plan, and Mick has no choice but to defend himself. Written by
Bad Boys, starring Sean Penn as Mick O'Brien and Esai Morales as Paco Moreno, is one of the most entertaining and disturbing movies ever. But to focus on the two leads is unfair to the host of other actors who put in magnificent performances, particularly actor Eric Gurry as Barry Horowitz.
Teen Mick O'Brien is a vicious gangster punk. When one of his armed robbery schemes goes awry, a robbery of a drug deal involving Paco Moreno, he unintentionally runs down and kills Moreno's little brother, and ends up in juvenile prison. His cell mate is Horowitz. After an awkward start they become close friends and confidantes. Horowitz, who has been there a while, teaches O'Brien the ropes. Meanwhile prison guard and counselor Ramon Herrera (actor Reni Santoni) wants to set Mick on the right path, but this is not an easy task.
The prison officials have given authority over other prisoners to two tough inmates, cell mates Viking (actor Clancy Brown) and Tweety (actor Robert Lee Rush), who get to hand out prison work assignments, receive the profits from cigarette sales, etc. They immediately come into conflict with O'Brien and Horowitz. O'Brien manages to usurp their position of authority, leading to further conflicts. O'Brien's toughness and street smarts make him the winner time and again.
The character of Horowitz, a young Jewish boy who came to juvey after a botched revenge plot, is worth a whole review by itself. What a shame that this magnificent actor, Eric Gurry, has appeared in relatively few films. Though he is small and weak and would appear to be of little help in a fight, his wit, dogged determination and superior intelligence help him to survive in this environment where he is very out of place. Despite being nothing like the other prisoners, as the film progresses we learn that he has strong criminal tendencies and prison is probably where he belongs.
Moreno, seeking revenge on O'Brien, beats and rapes O'Brien's girlfriend (actress Ally Sheedy) so he can go to prison and get even. Tweety is paroled, and Moreno moves in as Viking's roommate. These kindred spirits promptly begin plotting against O'Brien.
Circumstances take both Viking and Horowitz out of the picture, leaving Moreno and O'Brien to face a final showdown alone.
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