Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content
Exclusive
Join our live viewing party of the 'This Is Us' season premiere.

This is Us

Tonight at 9PM ET

Article

Straight Out of Brooklyn

Posted on

Straight Out of Brooklyn

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
91 minutes
performer:
Lawrence Clifford Jr., Matty Rich
director:
Matty Rich
distributor:
Samuel Goldwyn Home Video
author:
Matty Rich
genre:
Mystery and Thriller, Drama

We gave it a B

Straight Out of Brooklyn may have been the most talked-about and least-seen movie released this past summer. Talked about because it was written, produced, and directed by Matty Rich, a 19-year-old from the projects of the Red Hook section of Brooklyn. Unseen partly because it’s such a bummer, an unflinching tragedy about a smart, frustrated teenager (Lawrence Clifford Jr.) who’ll do anything to get out of those same projects — up to and including crime. Similar downbeat qualities didn’t stop Boyz N the Hood, the West Coast equivalent of Brooklyn, from becoming a hit, but that film had a rap star in the cast, a major studio behind it, and a natural-born director in John Singleton. So far, unfortunately, Rich doesn’t show Singleton’s way with a camera or ear for dialogue: His art consists of artlessly filming his characters making their speeches. Still, raw anger and ambition count for a lot, and what Rich lacks in style he almost recoups in brute force. Straight Out of Brooklyn is unquestionably straight from the heart, and its urgency is enough to make a little thing like subtlety seem quite beside the point. B

Comments