Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Rosario Dawson, Lou Taylor Pucci, Naomie Harris, Paul Dano, Frankie Shaw
Director: Mark Webber
In the streets of North Philadelphia, the lives of strangers intersect in a bold and moving semi-autobiographical tale that crosscuts between the many people who struggle in the face of poverty, drugs and the human connect... more »
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Nicole Moore | Stockbridge, GA | 03/29/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This movie turned out not to be as good as advertised. I received in a timely fashion and it was in great shape though."
Is it over yet?!
Just Me | Portland, OR | 09/28/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"From the first impressions that I derived from the trailer I was anxious to see what I thought would be a very moving story of reality and poverty right here in America. Sadly, this was a poorly written attempt to convey such reality to others. It simply was.., all over the place with absolutely no continuity of story. Aside from a good cast, I could hardly wait for this one to be over!"
Quietly powerful urban drama
Roland E. Zwick | Valencia, Ca USA | 08/09/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Crumbling, hollowed-out buildings, trash-strewn alleyways and weed-infested empty lots provide the backdrop for "Explicit Ills," a low-keyed, understated account of a group of largely unrelated people struggling to make a go of things amidst poverty and urban decay in Philadelphia. Yet, despite the grimness of the setting, the movie offers a basis for renewal and hope through a cast of characters who don`t exactly fit into the stereotypical slum-drama mold - and in the film's commitment to social justice through unity and action.
In terms of form, Mark Webber's film is more a series of vignettes than a conventionally structured narrative, an approach that actually works quite well given the slightly amateurish, rough-around-the-edges nature of the piece. Yet, despite limited financial resources, Webber has fashioned a stylish, sometimes even quite visionary work that clearly cares about its characters and the community to which they belong.
Those characters include a young couple caught up in the web of drug addiction; an aspiring actor who's struggling with depression; a seven-year-old chess player who gets picked on at school; a sweet-natured teenager who's trying hard to impress his girl; a pot-smoking mother who's having to counsel her son to stay away from the drug till he's older; and another mother (played by Rosario Dawson) who's desperate to get some much-needed medicine for her asthmatic child. The characters have little in common with one another except that they happen to live in the same geographical locale and they're all trying to do the best they can with what fate and, in some cases, their own choices and actions have led them to. The movie ends on a powerful note of optimism and reconciliation after a heartbreaking and gut-wrenching event befalls two of the main characters.
When all is said and done, Webber's first directorial effort is more a work of "promise" than a fully realized work of art in its own right. But if your taste runs more towards the experimental and the "hip" and less towards the stale conventions of commercial moviemaking, then "Explicit Ills" might well be the movie for you."