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A teen with a troubled home life and a penchant for trouble runs with a wrong crowd that constantly gets him in trouble. When his friends steal an older woman's purse, the school principal sees the boy fleeing the scene. When the boy will not involve the friends, he bears the brunt of the crime. In a meeting with his parents, the principal immediately senses the conflict that the boy has is his home life. The principal offers the boy an alternative to being removed from school by working for the woman he robbed until his debt is paid off. Going to her home, he meets her two mentally handicapped sons and the woman, who talks to her deceased husband whom she believes inhabits her garden. Conflicted by the kindness and the love he sees in her family, the boy has to deal with his home strife and the antics of his hoodlum peers. The eventual resolution does offer some surprises along the way. Written by
John Sacksteder <firstname.lastname@example.org>
At the beginning of this movie we meet Charlie, a hot headed teen who is constantly fighting at school. His home life is miserable. His father is an equal hot head who argues constantly with his mother driving her to drink. To make matters worse he's just fallen in with a group of troublemakers. He gets blamed when one of his friends steals a purse. The principal, played by James Caan, agrees not to suspend him if he works off his debt to the purse's owner, Mrs. Ritchie (Gina Rowlands).
Mrs. Ritchie proceeds to teach Charlie about living and caring for each other.
The movie start out poorly. The setup of Charlie's character is painful and the scenes with his friends cliché and over dramatized.
However, when Gina Rowlands appears on the screen as Mrs. Ritchie the movie takes a wonderful turn. Mrs. Ritchie is offbeat and colorful; her zeal for life intoxicating.
Don't let the start of the movie keep you from enjoying a delightful and uplifting film.
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