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Sleepers
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Product Description

You hurt the neighborhood you pay the price. Thats how it is in new yorks hells kitchen of the 1960s. For four pals growing up there thats how it will always be. Fifteen years after terrible events scar their lives they are ready to even the score. Studio: Warner Home Video Release Date: 12/09/2008 Starring: Brad Pitt Kevin Bacon Run time: 148 minutes Rating: R Director: Barry Levinson

The first thing you need to know about Sleepers is that it's based on a novel by Lorenzo Carcaterra that was allegedly based on a true story. The movie repeats this bogus claim, which was attacked and determined by a wide majority to be misleading. Knowing this, Sleepers can be a problematic movie because it's too neat, too clean, too manipulative in terms of legal justice and dramatic impact to be truly convincing. And yet, with its stellar cast directed by Barry Levinson, the movie succeeds as gripping entertainment, and its tale of complex morality--despite a dubious emphasis on homophobic revenge--is sufficiently provocative. It's about four boys in New York's Hell's Kitchen district who are sent to reform school, where they must endure routine sexual assaults by the sadistic guards. Years after their release, the opportunity for revenge proves irresistible for two of the young men, who must then rely on the other pair of friends (Brad Pitt, Jason Patric), a loyal priest (Robert De Niro), and a shabby lawyer (Dustin Hoffman) to defend them in court. Despite the compelling ambiguities of the story, there's never any doubt about how we're supposed to feel, and the screenplay glosses over the story's most difficult moral dilemmas. And yet, Sleepers grabs your attention and pulls you into its intense story of friendship and the price of loyalty under extreme conditions. The movie's New York settings are vividly authentic, and Minnie Driver makes a strong impression as a long-time friend of the loyal group of guys. --Jeff Shannon

Customer Reviews:

  • Enjoyable movie, but... enough with the "true story" line!
    Yes, it's a good movie. Yes, "Sleepers" was a good book - BUT bear in mind it was promoted as a "true story" with but one thought in mind: to cause a controversy that would make it a bestseller. Now that everyone whose eyes, ears and brain are operational, knows that "Sleepers" is pure fiction, why does the movie studio still try to market the film as "non fiction"? Watch "Sleepers", by all means, but remember that it's fantasy, not fact....more info
  • Excellent film with a great cast
    Sleepers is a deeply disturbing movie, and is difficult to watch at times, only because of its touchy subject matter. While the incidents that take place are never witnessed by the viewer, they are implied, but are necessary for the foundation of the whole movie. Whether this story is true or not, the storyline is gripping and is a good follow up to the novel 'A safe place' which would have also made a good movie. The all star cast is what will entice most viewers. With the like of Robert De Niro, Kevin Bacon, Dustin Hoffman, Brad Pitt, Billy Crudup, Minnie Driver, Jason Patric and Bruno Kirby - it is hard not to be impressed by each and everyone of their performances. Kevin Bacon is outstanding as a sadistic guard at a juvenile detention center.
    The story revolves around four boys growing up in Hells kitchen and the first half of the movie focuses on them growing up and doing their time in Wilkinsons home for boys. It is then after this we fast forward 13 years when they have all grown up and fate will have them facing their demons for the first time. Barry Levinson directs a powerful drama with an excellent music score, great dialogue and excellent pictures. The sound is also good in 5:1 surround. The DVD is lacking special features unfortunately, as you only get a trailer. A behind the scenes featurette or interviews with the stars would have been much aprreciated.
    Overall, this movie tells a very good story, one than will leave a lasting effect on you, for better or worse....more info
  • True or false...it's still worth the time...
    The debate over whether or not this film portrays actual events is really moot to me, for even if the events portrayed were as faux as an episode of `Law & Order' they would still hold a very powerful message in their hands. Adapted from Lorenzo Carcaterra's novel/memoir of the same name, `Sleepers' claims to be an accounting of Lorenzo's life as a child, being sent to a juvenile detention home at a young age with three friends and being repeatedly abused by the guards until their release.

    Ten years later and these four friends are reunited with the guard that ruined their lives. Sean Nokes (Bacon) shows up at a local diner where two of the molested, Tommy (Crudup) and John (Eldard), are taking a couple drinks. After recognizing this man they kill him in cold blood, and of course are then arrested for it. That's when the other two boys, Lorenzo (Patrick) and Michael (Pitt) decide to make their case. Michael is a high profile prosecutor who takes the case AGAINST his friends in an attempt to turn the tables on the detention center the boys where abused in.

    What makes this film so compelling is the brilliant acting on the parts of Pitt and Patrick as well as Bacon in all his sadistic pleasure, but to me it was De Niro who plays the boys priest Father Bobby and serves as their only real friend who moved me the most. You could see all the pain in his eyes as he heard what these boys, these boys whom he loved and cared about, had to go through. Minnie Driver also delivered a stand out performance as long time friend and lover to the boys, as well as Dustin Hoffman (always brilliant) as the accused shabby lawyer.

    True or false, `Sleepers' is still a gripping courtroom drama that is sure to have you at the edge of your seat for its entire duration....more info
  • A film to remain in your collection..
    Sleepers is not the right name for this movie, as sleep is the least thing these boys got. Four boys who try to have some fun in New York's, Hell's Kitchen, are now caught in the legal system for a prank gone terrible wrong. The boy's action lands them into a reform school, a reform school with sick and twisted guards who use young boys as slaves and pieces of enjoyment and pleasure. With no detail or piece of action from the reform school missing, this seems to be the hardest part of the movie to watch.

    Jason Patric, and Brad Pitt, lead lives of today's norms, one a journalist and the other a lawyer. Two of their other friends lead lives of gangsters and hard-core street bangers. In an act of fate and karma, the two gangsters recognize their former sadistic guard eating at a local restaurant, and quickly take their anger out on him as their revenge.

    Faced with a murder case, the prosecuting attorney (Brad Pitt), and the journalist, working together with their former father-like figure, and priest, Robert Deniro, get ready to turn the case around against the guards of the reform school. With everyone's lives and careers aside, they keep their lifelong friendship alive.

    Sleepers is one of those movies that you pick up by chance, but it will always remain in your DVD collection once you do pick it up.
    ...more info
  • Intense.
    Sleepers is an unsettling drama featuring an all-star cast. The best performance in the film is Brad Pitt, this role proved he's more than a pretty face. Jason Patric is also terrific here, very under-rated actor. The film deals with abuse, and nothing graphic is shown but you are fully aware about did happen to these boys when they were teens. Great film from a great director, check it out!...more info
  • Sleepers is an excellent, haunting tale
    Rare is a movie that completely holds your attention for 2 1/2 hours but Sleepers is that movie. Played out by an exceptional ensemble cast (Brad Pitt, Jason Patric, Dustin Hoffman, Brad Renfro), it tells the tale of four young Hell's Kitchen boys who after pulling a seamingly harmless prank, are sent to a juvenile facility where they face unspeakable horrors at the hands of ther wardens. This trauma follows 2 of the boys into adulthood where they enter a life of crime. When they take their revenge on a particularly sadistic guard, it's up to the other boys, along with a childhood gal pal and a loving priest to save them. Every performance in this movie makes an indelible impression but the standouts are Deniro as Father Bobby, Frank Medrano as neighborhhod shopowner Fatman, Minnie Driver as Carol and Geoffrey Wigdor as young John. I watch this movie every November(it feels like a Fall time movie) and it never fails to amaze me. It is tense, heartwrenching, touching and at times funny. However the final 5 minutes always hit me where it hurts. When I think of how those kids were robbed of a normal life it sickens me. Sleepers is a phenomenal film that will leave a deep impression....more info
  • One of THE best movies that you will ever see
    I have seen this movie so many times since it first came out, i hvae no idea what the number is. This is an amazingly depressing yet wonderful story based on Lorenzo Carcaterra's experiences with his 3 friends from childhood to adulthood. Like I said, I have seen this movie countless times and it never fails to make me cry. It's such a sensitive subject that is dealt with very well. These boys (the ones still living are around 40+ years old) went through SO much being abused, sexually and physically by sadistic, sick guards. Kevin Bacon plays the main guard who later gets what he deserves by John and Tommy. Joe Perrino and Jason Patric as Lorenzo "Shakes" Carcaterra were both wonderful as the younger and older Shakes. Joe Perrino did exceptionally well, beyond what most child actors perform. He made you feel the pain that Shakes had to go through, as did Jason Patric. Jason Patric was also chilling with the narraration. Brad Renfro and Brad Pitt play Michael Sullivan, the ringleader, who later becomes an attorney. He, along with Shakes who is a reporter, rig the trial of John Reilly (Geoffrey Wigdor and Ron Eldard) and Tommy Marcano (Jonathan Tucker and Billy Crudup). The movie is about their horrific childhood experiences at the prison for boys and how they get revenge on the guards who tortured and raped them when they were little boys. It's a very moving story, and theres controversy as to whether or not it's true. I believe this story, but it doesn't matter if it's true or not..It's still a beautifully chilling movie and everyone should see it. The book is extremely good, well written and like the movie, will make you cry. Again, I've seen this movie countless times, own it on dvd and vhs and I watch it every time it comes on TV. It is that good......more info
  • Yawn!
    Most people only write reviews of movies they really like. But for this movie, I disliked it so much, I felt the need to warn others before they decide what they want to rent.

    How do you make a movie about pedophilia boring? Ask Berry Levinson. Of course, if I'd have known he directed it, I wouldn't have rented it, because I've hated all his movies. All his movies have the following problems, including Sleepers:

    -Inappropriately happy 60's music blaring during most of the film.

    -Unbelievable "pranks" that make you doubt the story and the story teller.
    -Long boring scenes that go nowhere and don't seem to have a purpose.
    -People with obnoxiously fake New York accents.
    -All the women are merely objects or props for the "cool" males to play with.

    The only redeeming quality to this film was that Brad Renfro was in it....more info

  • Saw this when it first came out in 93' and decided to share
    "SLEEPERS" HAS TO BE ONE OF THE GREATEST MOVIES I'VE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE! It is filled with so much emotion that will carry you for years to come. The plot could be a little offensive to some and rumors of the alleged pseudo story should not keep you from experiencing this magnificent masterpiece.

    This is a movie not to be missed! All characters are unique in their own way, but also connecting in their aspirations. The four young boys deliver a performance of innocense that make you want to reach in and give your life to them. When they grow old, the shattered innocense is still evident in their faces, demeanors, and even action. They have more determination to finally seek the revenge they so yearned for and not even arrogant revenge - sweet revenge. Revenge that no one I know would feel differently about. I guarantee the characters feelings will soon be transformed into your own. One of Brad Pitt's greatest movies; Jason Patrick's tender quality; Billy Crudup's first encounter with serious acting before "Almost Famous"; Ron Eldered is great with remaining inner turmoil; All four young stars are excellent also with one of Brad Renfro's best movies; Robert De Niro's talent never fails as the boy's priest trying to set their lives in the right direction; Also one of Minnie Drivers' gentle performances. The acting and musical direction connect to bring you scenes that are just plain - beautiful.

    Barry Levinson creates such scenes to enliven the passion you never knew you had. The movie ends and begins with the four friends who were succumbed to sexual, physical, and verbal abuse winning a dance competition. Additionally, with some narraration that will catch your intuition with deliberate interest. Throught the movie, you follow the agony associated with losing the innocense that once made the value of your life. You follow Shakes, John, Tommy, and Michael through a journey of once achieving the one thing that can alleviate some pain of their experiences - revenge.

    I implore you to take the time to watch this movie and read the book (because it can even be much better than the movie if one can believe that) and i promise you won't miss out on life - you might gain realizations and insight into your own.

    HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Guaranteed to reveal inner emotions and connect with the characters on a level beyond your expectations. Read the book ... Watch the movie ... and it will remain one of your greates experiences ever. Guaranteed. GO NOW...I PROMISE!...more info

  • My favourite movie of all time
    This is one of my favourite movie ever along with IT(stephen king movie) and The Shawshank Redemption.
    This movie is a master piece revealing the truth of Juvenile prisons along with other places where people in power (police, government...) takes control of normal people.
    It's about sexual harrasment of young children who grow up to revenge their childhood.
    I rate this movie as 150% master piece with the best performance of all the actors and actresses.
    ...more info
  • Great movie!!!
    It is a sad story, but wow it is a great movie with awesome actors!!!...more info
  • "How deep is deep?! - Sleepers!"
    The movie "Sleepers" is based on a novel and tells the story of four boys who grow up in Hell's Kitchen, a part of New York, where crime is a normal daily act.
    As they commit a prank when they are still young they are sentenced to spend a few months in a detention center. This punishment changes their whole lives because they are sexually abused and later two of them even become murderers.
    Brad Pitt, who plays one of the four main characters, gives a convincing performance because you can really feel what it must be like for the boys to live a normal life although they have been abused.
    One actor plays the role of the boy who comments on the whole story. Like Brad Pitt he also gives a detailed inside of the deep feelings of an abused boy who is trying to live a normal life.
    Other famous actors in the movie are Dustin Hoffmann, who portrays convincingly the role of a drug addicted and alcoholic lawyer, and Robert DeNiro who gives a strong impression of a Father who seems to be the only person whom the boys can deeply trust.
    The feelings are supported by different camera techniques such as many close-ups of the characters' faces and a lot of flashbacks which underline the cruel memories of the boys.
    If it has one fail it is that sometimes there are too many cuts which follow each other too fast.
    The trial at the end of the movie seems to be too long and gives the viewer an impression of boredom.
    All in all the story conveys a sense of depression. So the movie as a whole may not be for everyone, but you cannot walk away from it without being impressed by the deepness of the story.

    Julia B., Alexandra T., Andrea S., Moritz G., Melanie P. ...more info
  • The tragic way out of hell
    The society drama "Sleepers" from Barry Levinson tells the spectacular story of four boys (Brad Pitt and Jason Patric i.a.),
    who grow up in a violent neighbourhood, called Hell's Kitchen. After a simple prank, which goes wrong, their lives change completely. They are sentenced to Wilkinson School for Boys where horrible incidents happen. 15 years later in a new life, they decide to take revenge...
    The story is based on the book with the same title, but it is not settled if it is really autobiographical. Worth mentioning are the well chosen camera techniques, which reflect the people's
    feelings and the dramatic events. Because of these effects you can identify with the characters. The presentation of several characters is well done by Robert de Niro, who characterizes the priest "Father Bobby" and also the ward "Sean Nokes" is very well performed by Kevin Bacon, who conveys the malignance in a special way. The only aspect, which has to be critizised is the difficult story, which is hard to follow at some stages. With this masterpiece Levinson proves his talent by creating a realistic atmosphere and keeping up tension during the whole film.
    This film is worth being nominated for an "Oscar" !

    Written by : Andreas, Simone, Dina from the GBG School in Germany, Remscheid ...more info
  • True story or not, great movie.
    The members of an all-star cast in Sleepers give an excellent performance in this disturbing film about the lives of four men adversely affected by the horrors of their childhood. Some have said the story is true, some say it is not. Whether or not the incidents portrayed in the film actually took place doesn't take away from their power on the big screen. The four friends take charge as adults to exact vengeance on those guilty of their abuse as youths. That empowerment, even if the film is not based on an actual event, is a strengthening and vindicating shout for viewers who have found themselves in the place of those four boys. And for viewers who have never been in those unfortunate situations, the film creates enough reality to draw empathetic support from this audience. Sleepers is an important film and a well-produced one. The writing, editing, acting and directing are top-notch. Any viewer's attention will remain fixed throughout the movie....more info
  • bottom of the barrel
    Like a particularly bad segment of the already-bad Dateline, this snoozefest proves that top talent and production values do not ANYTHING make. Scenes go on forever and the film is incredibly self conscious as to its time period. A mess....more info
  • Distrubingly intense
    I found this to be an incredibly compelling film, although it took a long time for me to get past the central brutality, and watch it a second and third time. By then, I was hooked.

    The underlying story is a troubling but familiar one, about young boys growing up in the Hell's Kitchen section of New York. Their lives take them on a huge turn when heir "innocent" prank goes bad. For their crime, they are sentenced to a year in a reform school for troubled boys, ostensibly to keep them from advancing into a life of crime.

    Unfortunately, the institution is populated by not only brutally sadistic fellow inmates but also with guards who take the boys' remaining innocence and traumatize them. The boys leave, but
    years later their paths bring them back across a terrible reminder of their past. The remainder of the film is the turning of the law enforcement system, in which the system itself is shown for what it was, and the way it impacts these individuals.

    One of the bit players, Frank Medrano as a neighborhood tough guy has the most timeless line of the film: "On the street, justice got no price. She's blind where the judge sits. But she ain't blind out here. Out here, the ... got eyes."

    Fabulous performances, even if they were critically not acclaimed. Robert DiNero is terrific as a local priest who never gives up hope for "his boys", even to the point of ommitting perjury for them. Kevin Bacon IS the sadistic guard, and there is real joy at seeing his comeuppance. Brad Pitt and Dustin Hoffman appear as dueling lawyers in the courtroom scene, each giving marvelous and understated performances. Ron Eldard steals his scenes as one of the abused boys, all grown up, who serendipitously discovering Bacon in a restaurant has the best line of the movie when Bacon asks him what he wants. His retort, (which I will not quote, to avoid giving away the
    ending) delivered with deadly quiet, and is nothing short of chilling.

    As another reviewer said, this film is stunning with its insight of boys' institution's and its horrors. It makes one wonder if anyone can ever survive the institution which was supposed to be an alternative to jail for kids.

    Growing up in New York around the same time as the protagonists, and getting into just a tad of trouble myself, I kept thinking "There but for the Grace of God go I".

    That alone was enough to make me say "Damn! What a movie" ...more info

  • sleepres

    this is great movie it have great actor every body deserve thumb up...more info
  • Great Movie
    Sleepers will trick you. It begins like a funny coming of age movie. Young boys, most of them who are Altar Boys, in Brooklyn checking out girls, snooping in on other peoples confessions, getting into plenty of mischief and basically just being kids (troublemakers but who wasnt, right) and the movie lets you get a good feel of the characters before anything dramatically changes. It lets you grow to like the boys and lets you get a few laughs in. The story follows Tommy, John, Michael and Lorenzo "Shakes" on their shinanigans until something that was meant to be a prank goes terribly wrong. It takes them to a dark path in a youth correctional facility called "wilkensons home for boys" where they are beaten daily, raped daily and during one point you watch one as he is left for dead in solitary confinement. You watch as the boys lives are forever changed. Sleepers is 2 stories connected by the people involved in the story. Michael grows into a successful lawyer, Shakes grows into a writer , and john and tommy turn into notoriously known hardened criminals. One day John and Tommy find one Sean Nokes (a particulary rememberable abusive guard) and fill him from head to toe with bullets. After years of keeping the horrors of Wilkensons a secret to both friends and family, including their best friend Carol (grown up carol played by Mimi Driver, shes AMAZING in this film) and their life long friend and mentor Father Bobby (Robert Deniro). When John and Tommy are convicted of the murder of sean nokes lorenzo and michael are left with a painful decision, let their friends be possibly put to death or get help, help which will require telling their story. The movie follows the trial and choices that are made. One by one the boys, now men are faced with the question "how far will you go to get your and the ones you loves past at rest." YOULL NEVER FORGET SLEEPERS. YOULL NEVER FORGET ANY CHARACTER IN THIS MOVIE AND YOULL NEVER FORGET THAT THIS IS THE TRUE STORY OF THESE BOYS, THIS REALLY HAPPENED.... (sleepers is based on the true story "sleepers" by Lorenzo Carcatera)...more info
  • More of a distillation of one hundred children . . .
    Based on fact . . . Well, if you'd ever been to one of those correctional units at that time, you would have seen some of the creeps who worked there. True, you might not find four guards of the same ilk who conspired to abuse the same four boys for the duration of their incarceration, but the abuse was there. As for the retribution being homophobic, the Amazon reviewer seems to think that pederasty is gender specific. To label the film as such is misleading. The strength of the film is compounded by the likes of Dustin Hoffman, Robert Deniro, and a handful of character actors who make their roles seem as natural and as effortless as a native of Hell's Kitchen stepping off of a curb. The younger actors, some of whom boast of "superstar" status, rightfully pale in the presence of the relentless characterization of their elders. Would that all the bad guys get the same comeuppance, would that down-and-out lawyers be given a last chance to shine, would that every neighborhood have a local priest who similarly embraced his parish. Forget the verisimilitude; suspend your disbelief, enjoy the movie. ...more info
  • What a great story
    This movie is great. Not only dose it have a great story to it, but the cast is nothing but allstars. I personally got this movie for the sake of Robert De Niro and Kevin Bacon. As it turns out after wathintg this masterpice...I LOVE THIS MOVIE!!!...more info
  • Sleeper
    IT WAS A GOOD STORY, TOLD WITH A LOT OF CLASS, AND THE SAD THING ABOUT IT,...IT REALLY HAPPENS TO CHILDREN..
    BRAD PITT ANT THE CAST WERE GREAT....B. KIPKER ...more info
  • Very happy
    I was very happy with my purchase of this DVD and the timeliness of its delivery....more info
  • Based on a True Story
    Sleepers made headlines even before its release when claims arose that writer Lorenzo Carcaterra had lied about the book being "Based on a True Story." This seems redundant given the BROAD nature of the phrase but never-the-less some cared more about the accuracy of the film than the message that it delivered.

    An all-star cast of Robert De Niro, Kevin Bacon, Brad Pitt, Jason Patric, Dustin Hoffman & Minnie Driver et al each provide a unique piece to the overall picture. De Niro's performance of Father Bobby is very convincing. He is the father figure to a lot of the potentially lost youth in Brooklyn.

    The message of the movie is simple, these things happen to children because the system is a failure. The ending is a metaphor and it is clear...If justice is indeed blind, then those that are failed by the system can have their wrongs righted by beating the system. This is a great movie to say the least.


    ...more info
  • A Grabber!! But Not For The Faint Hearted
    This is a movie that deals with the abuse of children in a reform school setting, and the revenge taken by those children when they become adults. In a nutshell, the story involves a childhood prank gone wrong, reform school guards gone sadistic and revenge taken fifteen years later by the boys, grown to manhood. I read Lorenzo Caracaterra's book (which was touted as a true story, but later shown to be no such thing, but still a good read) and here is one case where the movie is better than the book -- by far. The movie is tightly scripted, and although it may, at 2 1/2 hours, seem long, you will not notice the passage of time. The cast demonstrates from the very outset what fine acting is all about. To single out any one performer may not do justice to the entire cast, but Robert DeNiro is superb in the role of the parish priest, who becomes conflicted by his religious beliefs and his wish to help "his boys", grown to adulthood. Although the subject matter involving the reform school guards' sadistic abuse of four boys is troublesome, this is outstanding film making. I have watched it several times and will do so again, because of the compelling story, outstanding acting and superb filming. The DVD quality is excellent and so is the sound. I have never known anyone who did not find "Sleepers" to be anything other than an outstanding movie....more info
  • Sleepers - No film to fall asleep
    Sleepers is a film about friendship, honesty, justice and violence. Actors like Brad Pitt, Jason Patrick, Robert DeNiro, Dustin Hoffmann and Kevin Bacon on their tops show how life can be destroyed by action in affect.
    The story sets in Hell Kitchen, New Yorks violent quarter in the sixties. Four boys live a joyfull life until one hot summer day changes their lives completely. A man gets seriously hurt as the four guys play a prank. The teenagers are send to a Detention Center where they experience torture and sexual abuse comitted by the wards. Of course the boys suffer even as grown ups this physical and emotional injure and as two of them accidently meet one of their oppressors they take deadly revenge. As the two are send to trail the old stricks of friendship are newly bound and the other two, one of them a lawyer, try everthing to get the two frienda free. A cruel fight against the wounds of the past begins.
    The movie is dominated by flashbacks which show the crimes against the boys at the Detention Center and give the movie sort of mysterious deep.
    The story is told by Shakes, one of the boys, who also wrote the same named novel which is said to be based on real happenings.
    All in all Sleepers is an emotional, exciting film which shows the cruel reality of law and the ways of late justice.

    (Claudia Becker, Claudia Pries, Janina Huljus, Marscha Uredat) ...more info
  • Entertaining well made film about a difficult subject
    This film deals with a topic that continually arises in our culture, the sexual molestation of children by adults in authority positions. In some ways the film compliments the more contemporary film "Mysterious Skin" which deals with a similar theme. I will first discuss an overall assessment of the film and then return to the theme of sexual molestation and the long path to recovery from sexual molestation.

    As a dramatic engaging film, this product is very good. The acting of Robert DeNero, Kevin Bacon, Jason Patric, Minnie Driver, Billy Crudup, Brad Pitt, and Dustin Hoffman is super. DeNero is wonderful as the priest put in an ethical dilemna. Jason Patric holds the second half of the film together as the most psychologically sound of the victims. Kevin Bacon is creepy and realistic as the sadistic molester. Dustin Hoffman is a rare talent as he plays an incompetent alcoholic drug addicted second rate lawyer. Also note that the child actors were very good also. The plot is well developed and engaging, especially the division of the film into childhood and adulthood experiences. The Count of Monte Cristo by Dumas is also used as a unifying theme of imprisonment, escape, planned revenge, and redemption from pain. The cinematography was very good (notice the camera angels and techniques used on the city streets, the courtroom, and especially in the youth facility) and sound track (with serious almost tragic overtones) are first rate. Overall the film gets 5 out of 5 points.

    The theme of sexual molestation of children by adults is a difficult and disturbing topic. In this film, 4 boys are molested, with two emerging as angry killers and two emerging with intact emotional stability. Brad Pitt plays the young lawyer who uses the court room to unearth the sexual crimes committed by several guards in the correctional facility. Jason Patric however plays the victim with the the strongest emotional stability and who is capable of developing loving relationships and moving forward with his life. Revenge was the theme that holds the second half of the film together, carefully plotted and executed by two of the victims, impulsively and self defeating by the other two.

    A fine film worthy of your time....more info
  • Unbelieveable!!!!!
    I don't know how to feel about this movie. I was reluctant to watch it at first because I had heard about some of the controversial things that happened in the movie. When I finally saw it for myself, I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Even though there is friction about whether the horrfic things in this movie took place or not I still found it disturbing. I liked it don't get me wrong, but the movie doesn't really pick up until the four boys get shipped off to reform school. After they got there is when the nightmare really begins. I was totally disgusted when I saw how harshly Kevin Bacon was acting(I didn't know he had it in him). I felt so sad for the boys that I couldn't help but cry. After that, I got mad because I just didn't understand how or why people can be that cruel to children that they are suppose to be guarding and protecting. I could'nt believe they actually beat Rizzo to death (even though they didn't show the actual beating). That's the reason I loved it so much when Kevin Bacon got what he deserved. My heart raced through this whole movie. I just couldn't believe how Kevin Bacon just enjoyed and relished in the power he had over those young boys (not to leave out the rest of his ... pals as well). I guess Nokes (Bacon) just stood out the most to me because he was just plain sick. I must say that if this story was in fact true that the whole entire cast made me feel the pain of the people this sadistic trauma really happened to....more info