Story of a promising high school basketball star and his relationships with two brothers, one a drug dealer and the other a former basketball star fallen on hard times and now employed as a security guard.
This urban nightmare chronicles several days in the life of Caine Lawson, following his high-school graduation, as he attempts to escape his violent existence in the projects of Watts, CA.Written by
Daniel Bredy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Harolds (Caines cousins) car is a, 1991 BMW 3 Cabrio [E30]. See more »
Before the drive-by shooting at the end of the film, Illena's cousin is seen loading an Uzi machine pistol, and when the shooting is about to begin, he aims this gun out of the car window. However, when the shooting actually starts, he has changed over to a TEC-9, a completely different type of machine pistol. See more »
[Caine Lawson reflecting after being shot]
After stomping Ilena's cousin like that, I knew I was gonna have to deal with that fool someday. Damn. I never thought he'd come back like this, blasting. Like I said, it was funny like that in the hood sometimes. I mean, you never knew what was gonna happen, or when. I'd done too much to turn back, and I'd done too much to go on. I guess in the end it all catches up with you. My grandpa asked me one time if I care whether I live or die. Yeah, I do. Now...
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The Hughes brothers, when queried about the film's explicit content, have often talked about a "prison riot" scene that studio execs forced them to cut in order to avoid an NC-17 rating. The scene has yet to appear in any of the released versions of the film. See more »
The film starts off with the murders at a convenience story, and introduces the voice-over narration of the story. I find that this voice-over does wonders at making the audience sympathize with Caine's character. He was born into this society, and therefore is not to blame for his actions and choices. Though his character is not as unpredictably violent like O-Dog, and is somewhat mild. He doesn't carry a gun, and his demeanour isn't that menacing. The voice-over helps to gain some insight into his thoughts and is thus more humanized.
Tyrin Turner does a great job portraying his character. As a young boy on the edge of adulthood and just out of high school, Caine has no direction in life, and even has trouble answering whether he cares if he lives or dies. The many close-ups show his confusion at times and at others, his indifference to violence, implying his slow immersion into becoming like O-Dog. O-Dog is represented as a bit of a psychopath with no remorse or conscience for life. It takes little to set him off and Tate does a fantastic job of portraying this terrifying character.
This film is well made and the directing shows it. The Hughes Brothers perfectly place juxtapositions of scenes together for maximum impact. The flashback comes in the beginning and establishes Caine's back story while creating sympathy for him. The composition of shots too are done nicely, and complements the way the characters tend to travel in groups.
There is a lot of violence in this though, and it serves to show a realistic representation but can be very brutal. As mentioned before, it takes very little to upset O-Dog and turn him loose. The swearing is also very apparent and not one sentence goes by without them. Sometimes whole conversations go by with just cursing.
Overall a very powerful representation of ghetto society, where importance is on staying together and protecting one's own. Masculinity is also obviously a very big issue as they constantly try to assert themselves through aggression and cursing.
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