Owen Gleiberman
July 20, 2001 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Baby Boy

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
127 minutes
Wide Release Date
06/27/01
performer
Tyrese, Angell Conwell, Snoop Dogg, Omar Gooding, Taraji P. Henson, Adrienne-Joi Johnson, Ving Rhames
director
John Singleton
Producers
Sony Pictures Entertainment
distributor
Columbia Pictures
author
John Singleton
genre
Drama

We gave it a B

Jody (Tyrese Gibson), the strapping, sloe-eyed, 20-year-old protagonist of John Singleton’s ambling yet impassioned film, is, by any definition, a bum. Jobless and pleasure-seeking, with two young children by two different women, he can’t focus on anything but the next moment. The movie is lurching and repetitive, yet Singleton creates such an intricate and painful sense of what’s going on inside Jody that his haphazard days have more fullness, more life, than most movie characters’ tidy arcs. Gibson gives a broodingly responsive performance as a young man who refuses to grow up because it would mean he’d have to stop fighting himself.

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