In his directorial debut, Tony Bill assembles a truly remarkable cast of youngsters with little or no previous acting experience.
In his directorial debut, Tony Bill assembles a truly remarkable cast of youngsters with little or no previous acting experience.Chris Makepeace is superb as the slightly built kid coming anew to a Chicago high school dominated by extortionist gang leader Matt Dillon, also terrific in his part. Adam Baldwin is a standoffish, uncommunicative brute rumored throughout the school to be a psychotic weirdo who has killed cops and other kids. Dillon and gang use the rumors to demand payment from smaller fellows for ‘protection’ from Baldwin. But Makepeace will not pay up and takes his lumps until befriended by Baldwin, thereby beginning a warm friendship that leads to surprising turns in the plot. Technically, picture sometimes shows the threads of low-budget shooting, but the distractions are minor.
20th Century-Fox/Simon/Market Street. Director Tony Bill; Producer Don Devlin; Screenplay Alan Ormsby; Camera Michael D. Margulies; Editor Stu Linder; Music Dave Grusin; Art Director Jackson de Govia
(Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1980. Running time: 97 MIN.
Chris Makepeace Adam Baldwin Matt Dillon Ruth Gordon John Houseman Craig Richard Nelson