Barry Levinson (1996)

15 Certificate


Our Score
With its powerhouse cast and A-list director (Barry Levinson), this drama is long and exudes importance and integrity. So why does it come across as bogus and too hot under the dog collar? Though based on an admittedly controversial autobiography, the plot mechanism and its moral stance - that violent revenge is fully justified - is not totally believable. The story concerns four teenagers who are brought up by a priest. When a foolish prank causes a near-fatal accident, the youths are sent to jail where they are repeatedly abused by the guards. Years later, they plot revenge. The big themes pile up, but Levinson keeps the story rolling and vividly evokes the hothouse atmosphere of New York's Hell's Kitchen. And the cast is truly impressive: Robert De Niro as a priest, Dustin Hoffman as a lawyer, Kevin Bacon as a prison guard, and Brad Pitt and Jason Patric as two of the now grown-up abused children. It's often absorbing, but always a bit suspect.


Four teenagers are sentenced to reform school after a prank results in the accidental death of an old man, and suffer sexual abuse at the hands of the guards. Years later, when the boys have grown up and begun to follow very different professions, a chance encounter with one of their abusers inspires them to plot revenge. Drama, starring Brad Pitt, Robert De Niro, Dustin Hoffman, Kevin Bacon, Jason Patric and Minnie Driver.

Cast & Crew

Sean Nokes Kevin Bacon
Father Bobby Robert De Niro
Danny Snyder Dustin Hoffman
Lorenzo "Shakes" Carcarterra Jason Patric
Michael Brad Pitt
Tommy Billy Crudup
John Ron Eldard
King Benny Vittorio Gassman
Carol Martinez Minnie Driver
Ralph Ferguson Terry Kinney
Shakes's father Bruno Kirby
Young Michael Sullivan Brad Renfro
Henry Addison Jeffrey Donovan
Fred Carlson John Slattery
Director Barry Levinson
see more

Other Information

Language: EnglishColourGuidance: Contains violence and swearing. Available on: video, DVD and Blu-ray