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Rage-filled teenager James is never one to back down from a fight. He jumps at the chance to run drugs and guns for a gang and quickly ends up behind bars. He turns his life around in prison thanks to the unexpected friendship he forms with a convicted murderer.
'Jamesy Boy" tell the story of James Burns. A troubled kid that was in and out of institutions since he was six years old. Because of all his past problems his mother has to fight to get him into a public school because they just do not want the trouble he might cause. Before long James decides to go it alone, he cuts off his ankle bracelet and heads out. It doesn't take him long to meet Roc, a local thug who makes James his errand boy but it doesn't take long before the entire operation goes south and James ends up in prison.
James quickly makes an enemy in Guillermo who is in a rival gang but he also gains a few friends like Chris, a young kid new to the system and Conrad, a lifer who gives James some strong advice.
I thought this was a pretty solid crime film that is based off a true story, the film is told in present day and in flashbacks so you get to see James in prison and you get to see how his life was and what led to him being placed a maximum security prison. If you like crime films then I recommend checking this one out. There is a lot to like here and although the subject matter is not the most cheerful it is a reality and in the end there is a shimmer of hope as well.
"Jamesy Boy" is not the best of its kind but it is an entertaining film that is made better by some strong performances. Spencer Lofranco gives a strong and impressive performance as James, this is only his second film but I got a good feeling we will be seeing a lot man of this young man in the future. And the film is made better by some strong supporting roles from Ving Rhames, Mary-Louise Parker and James Woods. I have to say it was great seeing Mr. Woods again in a film.
Production wise the film could of been a bit better but for being a Indie film it gets the job done. There is a lot to like here, if your a fan of films such as "American History X" then I recommend checking this one out. Available on DVD and Blu-ray, both come with Special Features that include:
The film is a slow burn but it is an inspiring tale that is worth checking out.
Released by Phase 4 Films
*** 3/4 Out Of *****