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In the City of Angels there exists an entire world beneath Hollywood - the Gangs. When the Bloods and Salvadorians start encroaching into their neighborhood, the local gang fights back. But as the violence escalates innocent by-standers start to become the victims. One unlucky night a yuppie couple wanders into the wrong neighborhood at the wrong time and pay the ultimate price. Now the victim becomes the hunter as one man journeys into the violent and unforgiving underbelly of Los Angeles and rips open the wounds where loyalty is decided by the color of your skin, where pain is part of growing up and violence and mayhem rule. Can he survive or become another statistic?
I have to warn everyone that Gang Land is a re-lease of an older film called "Pariah." I am not sure why the name change but I guess it's to draw new attention to the film and hopefully a wider audience. Anyway the film is about An interracial couple who is attacked and the woman is gang-raped in a random attack. This prompts the woman to commit suicide and the man decides to seek revenge from the inside by joining the gang. However, once inside he learns of the reasons such as poverty and just not being accepted by society for their existence and starts developing a kinship until he is asked to kill someone to prove his loyalty. You can compare the film to others such as "American History X" or "Fight Club" but Gang Land stands out on it's own. Maybe because unlike the other two I mentioned Gang Land is a low-budget, Independent film and by being so it actually benefits from it, the acting is more realistic and gritty, that is just one of the things that stands out here. Damon Jones gives a terrific performance as Steve and the rest of the cast were also very good including Dave Ward, Angela Jones and Aimee Chaffin. With a budget of under $100,000 the film manages to achieve alot, there are gun battles, street fights, a fight with 50+ people, carjackings, etc... pretty impressive for what Director, Crew Hamilton had to work with here.
The film itself is a little uneven at times, sometimes it's almost brilliant while at other times it's just okay but over-all it's a highly entertaining and engaging film that quickly draws you in. If you haven't seen the film but enjoy the genre I highly recommend checking it out, if you go into it with an open mind knowing that this is not some big Hollywood production I think you are going to find a compelling story that sends a strong message while being enjoyable as well. The DVD will be released on April 26, you can order it HERE.
Released by Indican Pictures
*** 1/2 Out Of *****