Reviewed byBlackshotinkVote: 8/10/10
A lot can be written about the derailing of Mickey Rourke's career...But when reflecting on the the reasons he achieved such recognition tobegin with... One has to review Homeboy. The man had real talent as anactor and it is a shame that he is more remembered for phoned inperformances than the highlights. Homeboy is one of the highlights. Avery complete method performance that regardless of commercialstereotypes stays true to the characters created and the world they'rein.
This is a real picture of a fighter way past his prime who gets asecond chance at inspiration. But this is not the Rocky world where atheme song and a jog around the park give the character new life. Thisis a real character at the bottom of the bucket trying to reach up. Andthe mistakes of a lifetime are not easily overcome in this film.
Also Alan Parker's longtime cinematographer Michael Serensin makes hisdirecting debut. Sadly it also ends his directing career. But thescreen is always wonderfully alive under his direction both gritty andflashy in unison.
The support cast is wonderfully strong including one of the best minorsupport roles Christopher Walken has ever delivered.
I highly recommend this film for fans of smaller unconventionalcharacter dramas. If you want stereotypes... watch something else.
Reviewed bysherrillitaVote: 8/10/10
Rourke's Homeboy is accentuated with an excellent musical score. Thestorymight appear "old fashioned" (i.e. 1940's US) to some, but watch the movieagain and delve deeper - there is more than first meets the eye. Rourke'sshy, awkward Johnny Walker is a memorable character. Walken fansshouldn'tmiss this one.
Reviewed byEd-ShullivanVote: 7/10/10
Mickey Rourke's genuine love for the sport of boxing is evident in bothhis writing style and in his acting as the main character in his boxinggenre film Homeboy. Rourke plays a somewhat dim-witted, booze drinking,over the hill cowboy dressing boxer named Johnny Walker, whose onlymeans of eking out a bearable living is by getting back in to the ringtravelling from boxing venue to boxing venue and fighting the local'homeboys", where the judges seem to favor the local homeboy.
I believe that sometimes we the audience will see an actor portray acharacter that just does not seem believable on the big screen simplybecause the actors' previous body of work influences the audience toexpect to see the actor play a similar type character as in hisprevious roles on camera. In the case of Mickey Rourke, we are used toseeing him play leading tough guy roles as he did earlier on his careeras in his 1980's films where he was usually portrayed as the handsomeleading man as in The Pope of Greenwich Village, 9 ½ Weeks, Rumble Fishor in Diner. And then Mickey chooses to write a screenplay where heportrays a dim witted over the hill booze laden boxer who falls for acarnival girl of his dreams.
Mickey just shows us time and time again that he is not afraid toexplore new characters (as in his Academy Award Best Actor nominationin the 2008 film, The Wrestler) and he refuses to be stereotyped in hisacting roles. What I liked about the film Homeboy most was thecharacter Johnny Walker portrayed with a quirky distorted smile thatenjoyed the most simple things in life, such as hot walking thecarnival ponies along the sandy beach, or just being held by hiscarnival girlfriend Ruby played by Debra Feuer.
There are also good performances played by the seasoned actorChristopher Walken and Kevin Conway. Walken plays Wesley Pendergrass athief with grand illusions of wealth and expensive clothes. Wesley'sgrifter character plays opposite Johnny Walkers poor cowboy boxercharacter and in some ways a comparison can be drawn towards theearlier Academy Award winning 1969 film Midnight Cowboy starring JonVoight (Joe Buck) and Dustin Hoffman's (Ratso) characters.
Kevin Conway plays a grimy cop named Grazziano who is closing in onWesley's grifter activities and he has a soft spot for Johnny Walker'scharacter and tells Johnny while chomping on an apple that Johnny needsto know his various types of apples and to live his own life. Theaudience can interpret this exchange of dialogue between Grazziano thecop and Johnny the downtrodden cowboy boxer that he should stay awayfrom that bad apple Wesley because he is up to no good.
The actual boxing scenes in the ring were not the greatest, but Iunderstand that spending a ton of money on the movies production isbetter spent on building the characters (Rourke, Feuer, Walken andConway) then it would be on spending on a few minutes of boxingchoreography. The last fifteen minutes are very appealing as we seewhat will happen to the struggling boxer Johnny Walker, his new foundgrifter friend Wesley looking for that one big score, and Johnny'sgirlfriend Ruby who is struggling financially to hold on to herdeceased fathers carnival business. Who will win and who will lose inthe life battles we all face in one way or another? All in all, I likedthe film and I give it a 7 out of 10 rating. If you like Mickey Rourke,and you like a gritty under achiever, then Homeboy will not disappointyou.
Johnny Walker is a cowboy and a boxer. He is very shy and a bit of a fool. He is in love with Ruby, but he cannot tell her. He is also a bit old to keep on boxing, but its the only thing he does well.