Homeboys is a good example of what independents can bring to the party: a vibrant tale told at minimum cost (under $2 million), a focus on cultural minorities (ghetto blacks and Puerto Ricans) and access to the system for a talented minority director (Joseph P. Vasquez, who did Street Story and The Bronx War).
Ensemble piece follows the misadventures of four South Bronx youths from mid-morning Friday to Saturday dawn. It looks like it could be their last time together, as reality is bearing down.
Willie (Doug E. Doug) is a welfare sponger whose caseworker has run out of patience. Tom (Mario Joyner) is a would-be actor with a telemarketing gig. Johnny (John Leguizamo), a shy, serious Puerto Rican supermarket stocker, ignores his boss’ encouragement to try for a Hispanic college scholarship. Vinnie (Nestor Serrano), a Puerto Rican who pretends to be an Italian stud, sleeps all day and funds his party life by cajoling money from young girlfriends.
With plenty of tensions among themselves, they mostly pick on one another and get high on perpetual motion as they bounce from cruising to party-crashing to bars, cafes, peepshows, a billiards hall and a disco. Film is infused with an aggressive and engaging street energy and plenty of humor.