Reviewed bypyrrhusmjVote: 9/10
Absolutely go see this movie. It was great. From a critical standpoint there were some transition problems and a few acting issues, but the movie was intense and very well shot. The story did move off course a bit due to licensing issues and normal movie issues. For me it was sad to see my Alma Mater so prominently shown in a very bad light especially graduating in a class that was pretty inclusive. It was also a bit surreal to see a college favorite restaurant in Denton as a hangout for THS in Amarillo. Again, overall very good movie and worth seeing.
Reviewed byDavid FergusonVote: 8/10
Greetings again from the darkness. This feature film debut from Texas filmmaker Jameson Brooks (co-written with Sheldon Chick) was an Audience Award winner at last year's Dallas International Film Festival. It's based on the incredulous true story of a tragic crime and the subsequent trial that occurred in Amarillo in the late 1990's. It's also an introduction to a talented and exciting filmmaker with a message that is as every bit as important now for every community as it was 20 years ago in the Texas panhandle.
The courtroom scenes serve as the story structure while flashbacks are blended with the defense attorney (Glenn Morshower) commenting/mocking the evidence as it's shown to the jury. This style keeps those unfamiliar with the story uncertain as to the actual victim and the circumstances of the crime - at least until the final act when we see a re-enactment of the crime and the final day of trial. However, even if one is familiar with the specifics of the case, it is presented in such an exceptional manner that it will surely be just as impactful.
Keeping in mind that this is west Texas (remember "Friday Night Lights") and football reigns supreme, so the ongoing battle between the Punks and the Preps sets the stage for ultimate cultural battle ... especially in an area that is home to a nuclear bomb assembly plant. Volatility abounds. There is a terrific sequence with parallel cuts between the mosh pit of a local punk rock concert and the on-field violence of a local high school football game. There are more similarities than differences, well, until the kids from the two sides cross paths in the real world. Class differences are obvious, and so is the usual teen angst and rebellious nature.
Distinct differences in how the authorities handle each group's form of release are on full display. The punks are caught tagging, while the pasture party of the jocks gains frenzy. One of these ends with handcuffs, and the other with polite dismissal. The core of the story is the ongoing comparison between Brian (in a wonderful performance from Dave Davies), sporting a colorful Mohawk as he skateboards through town, and Cody (an effective Luke Shelton), a buttoned-up football player always striving to prove his mettle as he cruises around town in Daddy's Cadillac. A sense of doom-filled destiny accompanies their scenes, and of course, we know it won't end well.
Many will find the film reminiscent of Frances Ford Coppola's 1983 film THE OUTSIDERS, which featured the Greasers versus the Socs. The biting realism and grit of Mr. Brooks' film helps us better understand the similarities between the two groups who look so different. And that's the real message here: judging others by looks will never lead to understanding and peaceful coexistence. The cinematography of Jake Wilgonwski is a huge part of the emotional reaction we have to this story, and the notes provided at the end of the film leave us wondering if, 20 plus years later, we are any more advanced as a society than what occurred in that Amarillo parking lot.
Reviewed byrandallaviksVote: 8/10
I don't know if this is a good way to start a movie review, but after seeing this movie all I could think to do was message an old punk buddy of mine and warn him that the next time I saw him 'I was going to hug him and never let go.'
I have so much praise for this movie I don't even know where to begin (I would have expressed this praise to the filmmakers during their Tallgrass Film Festival Q&A, but when I was given the mic to comment, I just couldn't make ...words.) Y'see, it's a ton of bricks this movie... Not just in sad ways either, mind you, but across the board. The authenticity is overwhelming: The accuracy of the hangouts, the music blaring, the art that was happening, the bond between outcasts-if you've been there then you know the good times that are had with people who have nothing but would give you the shirt off their back if you needed it. But sadly, a part of that authenticity....the world is usually at war with us outcasts, and this movie shows that reality. Hard. Like all those bricks I mentioned earlier.
I'll quit waxing poetic and get to some movie stuff over here- The 3rd act of this film includes a scene that is still managing to shake my punk self and the film snob he grew up to be- to avoid violating the 'spoiler' criteria of this page, I will refer to this scene as the 'Truck Ride'. It may be the most haunting and true depiction of that journey I've ever seen committed to film. It's a perfectly filmed moment and- I pray I'm not out of line by saying-inspiring. Absolutely, we know the tragedy and bedlam that is looming when you take such a ride (and in no way am I trying to make light of the things that follow) but the filmmakers show that along with the fear and bloodcurdling uncertainty of that ride, there is a nobility. A quiet moment shared between the warriors who have no choice but to be on the way to somewhere they shouldn't be going. I'm not kidding, it's that powerful.
Oh yeah, movie review... (This movie made me get lost in thought again dammit!) Wonderful job done by all-Acting, Production, Cinematography, Direction. Sound. Everything is Outstanding. I will be owning this movie soon, and I WILL be owning it on DVD-it belongs on the bookshelf next to my copies of 'Another State of Mind', 'Decline of Western Civilization pt 1' and appropriately enough, 'The Outsiders'.
In the meantime I'll be raising a glass to fallen punks and fellow outcasts while I play my favorite Subhumans record-This one's for you Brian, I hope punk valhalla is treating you well my Brother.
Bomb City is a crime-drama, about the cultural aversion of a group of punk rockers in a conservative Texas town. Their ongoing battle with a rival, more-affluent clique leads to a controversial hate crime that questions the morality of American justice. Based on the true story of Brian Deneke.