Boy Wonder has been described as a, "...gritty, psychological-thriller," but I'm not sure that's the best way to wrap up this film.
A young boy from Brooklyn witnesses his mother's killing during a car high jacking and becomes overly obsessed with finding the man who murdered her. Haunted by the memories from his past, it's sometimes hard to tell if what he's seeing is reality or a manifestation from his clearly traumatized mind. While the beginning of the film navigates slowly, once the characters are developed, and we understand just how tormented Sean Donovan (Caleb Steinmeyer, who's guest appearances include True Blood and Lost) really is, the story begins to draw you in. There was an uncomfortable feeling I had while trying to decide if I liked Sean or not, and while the movie buffs will try to focus you in on his mother's murder as the culprit of his less than stable outlook on life, I think there's a bigger statement here...there are, more often than we'd like to believe, children who endure psychological trauma that is carried with them for their entire lives.
I'm a firm believer that "knowledge is power", so let me arm you with some facts about this one. Boy Wonder is the debut feature film for director, Michael Morrissey. This is important to keep in mind because he was able to raise enough dough to create a conceptually beautiful film. The cinematography and production is fantastic, and given that the economy has been what it's been, it's impressive that Morrissey was able to make an indie film look not so indie. While the story line as a whole wasn't the most original, the execution of the final scene in the movie was brilliant. I'm not going to spoil it for you, but the last 10 minutes made the slow start worthwhile.
My assessment--if you're looking for a happy, fluffy movie nicely wrapped in a bow, this one isn't for you. If you're interested in supporting a new artist, delving into the troubled mind of a traumatized boy, leaving behind any notions of childhood innocence, and being entertained at the same time, catch tonight's screening of Boy Wonder.
Next Screening of Boy Wonder:
Saturday, April 2nd 2011 at 10:15pm
NorthPark AMC Theater