With the exception of "The Unscarred", this is Buddy Giovinazzo's most technically accomplished piece. It does share thematic similarities with "Combat Shock", but it is a solid character drama that would not be out of place on a double bill with the Australian "The Boys". Being a Giovinazzo flick, it's about deeply flawed characters living in a personal hell. They see no way out of their situation and are too emotionally paralyzed to act, anyway.
Deborah Kara Unger, who is a dynamite actress (and seriously sensual), is terrific as Lorraine, the girlfriend of James Russo's Tommy. Tim Roth plays Joey, who has just been released from jail and relies on his brother gratitude to give him a roof and bed until he gets his act together. Complications arise when local criminal elements encroach on Joey's rehabilitation.
The plot is nothing new and hardly worth a mention. The drama's the thing here and it burns like a bolt of lightning once the the film's niceties are out of the way. Russo, who was also in "The Unscarred", is hard as nails and scarily convincing as Tommy. Roth never disappoints, unless the script's not there, and in this venture he makes us feel his pain.
Another vacation in hell, with a great score, from one of cinema's darkest contemporary directors who is as seriously underrated as Ferrarra is seriously overrated.