By Ken Tucker
Updated November 24, 2006 at 05:00 AM EST

Angel Rodriguez (newcomer Jonan Everett) is a Troubled Youth; Rachel Griffiths (Brothers & Sisters) is the Noble Social Worker who tries to steer him away from a life of crime. These archetypal clichés melt in the presence of the two fine actors, under Jim McKay’s assiduously unsentimental direction. When Griffiths’ Nicole invites Angel to temporarily move in with her and her husband (a nicely wary Denis O’Hare), this HBO movie becomes a tense kitchen-sink drama.

A making-of; quietly sharp commentary by McKay (who also co-wrote).