DeNiro is fantastic and little Leo is good too!
B. McEwan | 02/03/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
""This Boy's Life" is based on the memoir of author Tobias Wolff. It is about a young teenage boy, Toby, and his recently divorced mother(Barkin) trying to find a new life for themselves in the Pacific Northwest of the 1950's. They bounce around from town to town, never putting down any roots, and Toby becomes more and more delinquent and uncontrollable. His mother, desperate for some security in her life and a controlling influence on Toby's life, marries a mechanic from the dreary town of Concrete by the name of Dwight (DiNiro). Dwight is a phony, bullying, louse and Toby recognizes it right off. The main part of the film chronicles Dwight's physical and mental abuse of Toby and Toby's dreams of escaping Concrete and Dwight. This film was DOA in theaters when it premiered back in 1993. It was, however, fairly well-received by critics who especially took note of the performance of young newcomer Leonardo DiCaprio as Toby. I have even read a few critics state that DiCaprio upstaged DiNiro at every turn. That is laughable. Although DiCaprio is very good, DiNiro is fantastic. Dwight is one of his most memorable characters. At one moment Dwight can be all phony smiles and charm and the very next he is a dorky, but just as menacing, version of DiNiro's character from "Goodfellas"- Jimmy Conway. DiNiro's Dwight has a host of extremely memorable and sometimes highly amusing scenes: the Navy trick, the car ride, the candy hog, the Edsel, and, of course, Robert DiNiro in a Boy Scout's uniform."
Leo above all!
gens shkodra | Geneva,Switzerland | 07/15/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As a De Niro fan, I guess I should never say this, but I'm going to say (write) it anyway: Leo di Caprio steals the picture here! Only in "What's eating Gilbert Grape" have I seen him giving such an absolutely stunning performance, stealing the picture to Johnny Depp, another great actor that I admire. "This boy's life" is certainly not a milestone in De Niro's career. In fact this movie closed somehow a period during which he has made a string of mediocre movies, such as "Guilty by Suspicion", "Backdraft", "Capefear", "Mistress" and "Night and the City", and he went on later to give stunning performances in great movies such as "Heat", "Casino" and "Sleepers". Although I like De Niro and di Caprio, to me "This boy's life" is just a watchable movie. The best thing this movie brought to the audience is di Caprio who, I'm sure, will certainly give other remarkable performances throughout his long and, I hope, illustrious career."
A Wonderful And Disturbing Film
Barry | 09/08/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is about a mother and son, played by Ellen Barkin and Leonardo DiCaprio, who move in with the mother's new husband Dwight, played by Robert DeNiro, whose true colors come out after they move in. This is a serious and often disturbing film. Dwight and Tobey(DiCaprio)do not get along. This leads to a number of confrontations that are both verbal and physical. The physical fights are extremely unnerving. You have been warned. It is beautifully acted and written. DeNiro is very electrifying and larger than life. He is down right terrifying. DiCaprio is just as good. The guy can act. Ellen Barkin is good, but she is sort of a co-star and doesn't seem as important. The final climax is one hell of a memorable scene. It's almost worth the price of rental alone. See this movie. You'll be deeply satisfied."