Boy's Game, directed by Clement Virgo, played
to critical acclaim at the
2007 Festival Nouveau Cinéma. Peter
Howell, movie critic at The Toronto Star, gave the
film 3.8 out of 5 stars.
Virgo sometimes gets so carried away with the
strong ideas and characters of his films he forgets to deliver
a satisfying story.
sixth feature makes amends, and also comes full circle with
his debut Rude, where boxing, race and sexuality were at issue.
Boy's Game is a brawny urban drama set in a racially
charged Halifax, where a youthful crime of hate haunts boxer
Donnie "Decker" Rose (Rossif Sutherland, son of
actor Donald). He went to jail a decade ago, unrepentant for
the savage beating he laid upon black teenager Charlie Carvery
(K.C. Collins), which left him mentally impaired.
is now ready for release, considerably matured and sorry for
his sins. He's also apprehensive about the future. The only
thing he knows how to do is box.
you think you're ready for the world, Mr. Rose?" a parole
board member asks him. Is the world ready for Donnie Rose?
to the adage, time has not healed all wounds in Donnie's old
neighbourhood. Charlie's father, George (Danny Glover) harbours
a grudge, but he's also conflicted by his Christian belief
that two wrongs don't make a right. Glover is the standout
player of an excellent cast.
local boxer Ossie (Flex Alexander) seeks to avenge Charlie
by challenging Donnie to a match: go 10 rounds, winner takes
also has to face up to a volatile home situation. His brother
Keith (Greg Bryk) is a homophobic racist and wife-beater,
leaving his spouse Emma (Laura Regan) in need of a champion.
would be easy to view Poor Boy's Game as yet another
boxing picture about redemption, but that's far too narrow
a perspective. The film does function on a strictly action
level, with well-shot fight sequences that are all the more
intense for their grainy lensing. But Virgo and co-writer
Chaz Thorne look beyond the usual character arcs, adding fresh
and urgent perspective to a socially aware and emotionally
the ratings of all the films, click HERE.