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Fresh (1994)

 -  Crime | Drama | Thriller  -  24 August 1994 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 8,075 users  
Reviews: 57 user | 27 critic

Michael (or Fresh as he's well known) is a 12-year-old drug pusher who lives in a crowded housing project with his cousins and aunt. His father has become a street bum, but still meets with... See full summary »

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4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Sam
...
Ron Brice ...
Corky
Jean-Claude La Marre ...
Jake (as Jean LaMarre)
...
Luis Lantigua ...
Chuckie
...
Chillie
Cheryl Freeman ...
Aunt Frances
Anthony Thomas ...
Red
Curtis McClarin ...
Darryl (as Curtis L. McClarin)
...
Smokey
Víctor González ...
Herbie
...
Spike
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Storyline

Michael (or Fresh as he's well known) is a 12-year-old drug pusher who lives in a crowded housing project with his cousins and aunt. His father has become a street bum, but still meets with Fresh on occasion to play chess. Fresh is rather quiet in a crazy world. Fresh's sister is a junkie who sleeps with the dealers who Fresh sells for. As the story progresses Fresh realizes that he doesn't want to sell drugs anymore, he wants out. Written by ns74212@students.salisbury.edu

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Risking it all, he invents new rules... to beat the odds in a deadly game of survival. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for intense, realistic depiction of urban violence, and for drug content, pervasive language, and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

24 August 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kint az utcán  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$8,094,616 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Curtis's right arm moves from being near his face to being along his body after Jake kills him on the playground. See more »

Quotes

Fresh: Why you don't go to Esteban then?
Nichole: I don't like the way he looks at me. I don't need no spic pimp motherfucker looking at me like no fuckin' queen. I'm just a sorry-ass nigger whore.
See more »

Connections

References The Wizard of Oz (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Jesus Children of America
Written by Stevie Wonder
Published by Black Bull Music/Jobete Music Co.
Performed by Johnny Gill
Produced by Chuckii Booker for Big Dog Productions
Courtesy of Motown Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Boy in the 'Hood
28 January 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Boaz Yakin, the enormously talented writer/director of "Fresh" has done the impossible, a real movie about real things that offers a sharp contrast with other films about the subject we have seen before. Mr. Yakin working with what appears to be a cast of non professional actors, mainly, presents a gripping tale of life in the ghetto that will probably be a classic in this genre.

If you haven't seen the film, please stop reading now.

Fresh is the young boy at the center of the action. We follow him as he runs illegal drugs for the dealers of his area. Fresh comes from a broken home where the mother is not around and the father is absent from the picture. His kind aunt Frances has gathered about a dozen youngsters in the home she shares with her mother, who is the grandmother of all of them. In spite of the poor surroundings, this is a decent home.

Fresh probably learned quickly in his young life he must be a step ahead of the drug dealers and their henchmen in order to survive in that world. It's a heavy trip for a young child to deal with in his own life and still have a head in his shoulders. What Fresh does, of course, is illegal, but this is a determined young man that is looking for a better future in spite of what he sees around him.

Fresh loves to play chess. We watch him win games in Washington Square Park over more skilled players. Sam, his absent father, is a master of the game. Sam teaches his son the game and how to think the way the champions do. Sam is a highly intelligent man who has had the misfortune of falling victim to the bottle. His son, admires him but bears a resentment against him for abandoning him and Nicole, his sister. One thing is sure, Sam always wins when he plays Fresh. Only after all the big events at the end of the film, Fresh beats the old man up. In doing so, we see tears coming out of him because maybe then, Fresh realizes the enormity of the events he's been involved in, and the fact that his father, in yelling at him, perhaps shows the boy how much he cares for him.

There is a scene in the film involving pit bull fighting that will make, even the coolest viewer cringe. Fresh's dog wins a match, but it is a menace that has to be put to sleep. The scene where Fresh hangs the dog by his collar is one of the most horrible things we watch in the movie. Fresh is venting his frustration at a dog he clearly loved, but now he cannot keep.

The acting by all the principals is first rate. The only problem is that sometimes some of what he hear in the dialog is incomprehensible because of the use of street slang most of the viewers don't know. Sean Nelson makes a perfect Fresh. He is one of the most natural actors we have seen in a while. The lack of formal training works out as we watch a portrayal that is devoid of any mannerisms, or other cute poses that someone with more experience would have done with this role.

Samuel L. Jackson makes another incredible appearance as Fresh's father Sam. Mr. Jackson's take on this man is an excellent example why he is on of the best actors working in films today. Giancarlo Esposito as Esteban, the nasty drug dealer, adds another great role to his brilliant film career.

Adam Holender, the cinematographer, has given the film the right look. The dreamy scenes where Fresh is seen looking toward Manhattan at different times of the day, is pure poetry. This is an important movie dealing with an important subject. Thanks to Mr. Yakin, we go into that world that, for some of us, might as well be in another continent, but never right here in another part of town!


15 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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