7.2/10
24
4 user

Jump Boy (1999)

| Short, Drama
A London schoolboy of Pakisthani heritage attempts to impress his mates with his knowledge of all things American. But he soon painfully learns that there are those that won't stand for his know it all persona.

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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Shamil
Ashish Raja ...
Baggy
Mustafa Tahib ...
Umesh
Pritesh Barber ...
Jeetan
Elvis Gharu ...
Taz
Alan Francis Garneys ...
Kalpesh
Dharmen Patel ...
Harpaul
...
Usha
...
Jason
Justin Pickett ...
The Nigerian
...
Boy 1
Dele Johnson ...
Boy 2
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A London schoolboy of Pakisthani heritage attempts to impress his mates with his knowledge of all things American. But he soon painfully learns that there are those that won't stand for his know it all persona.

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Short | Drama

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More than rehashed Ali G.
20 December 2000 | by See all my reviews

Like many a Disney movie, 'Jump boy' carries a simple, censorious moral: be yourself. The punishments for not doing so are suitably nasty. this is a film full of people trying to be what they're not - mostly American, what with all the film-talk, hip-hop slang and dress, mobile phones etc. The humiliation of the MacDonalds' employee pretending to be from Brooklyn is particularly funny. As, it must be confessed, are the bullying scenes. While in real life the abuse of young kids by older thugs is disgusting, in a film there is something Basil Rathbone-ish about the style and humour with which these boys extract funds and humiliate their inferiors.

This would be little more than an amusing Ali G clone were it not for the fact that the wannabe gangstas aren't white, middle-class Cecils, but young Pakistanis. Obviously they have homes to got to, but in the context of this film, they are rootless, home-less, walking the streets, eating in junk-food dens, playing football under bridges. The influence of black popular culture, therefore, is a way of refusing assimilation into a white culture that has frequently, violently rejected them; or it might be sorry proof of how far American global capitalism has succeeded in creating a bland melting pot.

If the moral is glum, the filming is not, with Huda matching the boys' verbal energy and wit with the kind of hyperactive editing and tilted angles he probably learned during his time in TV. It's unusual for a Pakistanis-in-Britain film to totally absent the family context; this was the fruitful site of tension in films like 'My Beautiful Laundrette' and 'East is East'. Maybe, just as in Irish 'cinema' is learning to dispense with the old cliches of nationalism and religion, that other avenues are being explored.


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