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A Bronx Tale (1993)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama  |  29 September 1993 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 90,160 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 183 user | 47 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

A father becomes worried when a local gangster befriends his son in the Bronx in the 1960s.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Clem Caserta ...
Alfred Sauchelli Jr. ...
Frank Pietrangolare ...
...
Robert D'Andrea ...
Eddie Montanaro ...
Fred Fischer ...
Dave Salerno ...
...
Slick (Age 17)
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Storyline

Gangster Sonny is the big man in the Bronx neighborhood of an Italian small boy named Calogero. A shooting witnessed by the boy (nicknamed C) is the starting point of a lasting bond between the gangster and the boy. Father (bus driver Lorenzo), however, disapproves. C grows up under the wing of both men, torn between his own natural honesty and his fascination with Sonny. C's neighborhood cronies get involved in theft, use of guns, and racial fights. When C falls for an African American girl, things don't get any easier. C's leap to manhood is marked by tragedy, but also by his recognition of the many faces of love. Written by Horacio Abeledo <horabe@ipcabe.uba.ar>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

gangster | money | bus | bar | racist | See All (96) »

Taglines:

One man lives in the neighborhood, another man owns it. A devoted father battles the local crime boss for the life of his son.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language and several scenes of violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

29 September 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

In den Straßen der Bronx  »

Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$17,266,971 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to an interview with Lillo Brancato on 20/20 (1978), Brancato began using drugs during the making of this film. He stated that the first time he used drugs was right before the scene in which Calogero asks Sonny "Is it better to be loved or feared?" Palminteri and De Niro cautioned Brancato numerous times but to no avail. See more »

Goofs

When C is fixing his bike on the sidewalk his hands are black from the grease on his bike chain. When he goes into meet Sonny, both of his hands are clean. See more »

Quotes

Lorenzo: Sometimes in the heat of passion, the little head tells the big head what to do, and the big head should think twice about what you are doing.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dedicated to the memory of Robert De Niro, Sr. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: The IBM Challenge: Day 3 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

For Your Precious Love
Written by Arthur Brooks, Richard Brooks and Jerry Butler
Performed by Jerry Butler & The Impressions
See more »

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User Reviews

Wonderful coming-of-age story in little Italy
3 November 2000 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

Oh, what a wonderfully small and intricate film this is! How I love and cherish the world I am pulled into every time I see this film. Robert De Niro's directorial debut proves strong and lively, evidenced by how he stuck to a topic close to home; a young, impressionable Italian kid growing up little Italy in the late 60's. As the naive protagonist Calogero, or 'C' as he is nicknamed, Lillo Brancato gives a great performance as a young man torn between the working-class honesty displayed by his strict father and the ruthless world of organized crime demonstrated by the neighborhood crime boss Sonny (Chazz Palminteri adapted his own play and cast himself as a burly, laid back, world weary know-it-all).

One key element that snags you in is the narration. Like equally personal films of its stature (Scorsese's gangster trilogy, "Taxi Driver," "Election," "Bringing Out The Dead", "SLC Punk!"), the voice-over guiding brings you in even further into the already detailed landscape and story presented. I don't really consider this a mafia movie, it's much more of a coming-of-age tale. However, the background De Niro provides is so intimate and thorough that you wish for another film chronicling the life of Sonny.

I have to admit that, for a debut, De Niro's judicious use of music seemed to rival that of Spike or Scorsese in turns of effectiveness. First of all, De Niro kept a much more grass roots approach, sticking to doo-wop, soul, rock, "mobster pop" (Dean or Frank) and a little jazz. Whereas Scorsese will use anything at his disposal ("Casino" had two Devo tunes in it), De Niro really seems to search for what really makes the scene. My favorite is the scoring of a street fight scene to "Nights In White Satin"... De Niro must of knew before we did it was all in the violins. De Niro said he knew this type of story had been done before and didn't want to repeat anything, so he viewed Scorsese's mobster trilogy to see what already had been done. It's obvious he paid attention.

Even De Niro himself knows a little Italy gangster film is not complete with at least a surprise-ending cameo from you know who...


40 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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