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A destitute 14-year-old struggles to keep his life together despite harsh abuse at his mother's hands, harsher abuse at his father's, and a growing separation from his slightly older brother. Petty thefts for food grow into more major takes until he steals a cash box from the diner where he works. Although Joe uses the money to pay off some of his father's debts and to replace his mother's records that his father smashed in a fit of temper, Joe gets no thanks. Written by
John Sacksteder <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Val Kilmer gained a significant amount of weight for his role as an abusive alcoholic father. See more »
Joe licks the envelope closed to the card he leaves his mother under the porch, but when she crawls under the porch to open it, it is unsealed. See more »
What do you need the money for? Christ, I coulda got you the money. What the fuck d'you need money for? You're thirteen fucking years old.
Well, you're not gonna see fifteen at this rate.
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At 15 I started working until midnight on school nights. I would catch up on my sleep during Algebra class. Hey, a kid has to prioritize. My parents never asked where I was, never really cared. I think they thought the PTA was the company that helped stranded motorists. I would walk home or take the bus so that my Dad would not show up at school driving his big heap and chain smoking in front of the other kids parents in their BMW's.School dances? no. Football games? no. Dates? no. The only time I would have interaction with the other students was when the jocks where kicking my ass because I had a goofy haircut. My teachers? I went to a public school with a bunch of rich brats. If there was any energy from the teachers I assure you it was not generated towards the poor kid with the fat lip and funny hair. And, so I reminisced on my teenage days while watching Joe the King. A kid who just can not win, no matter where his heart is. Mr. Whaley, you blew me away as an actor, but you have done it as a director and writer also. If Telly Savales were here today he would say, "You've come a long way baby." I have a new idol, I call him Frank.
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