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Sleepers (1996) artwork
Four New York streetwise kids have made a mistake which will change their lives for ever.
Kevin Bacon, Billy Crudup, Robert De Niro, Ron Eldard, Minnie Driver, Vittorio Gassman, Dustin Hoffman, Terry Kinney, Jason Patric, Joseph Perrino, Brad Pitt, Brad Renfro, Geoffrey Wigdor
Suspense/Thriller
2
2 Hours 21 Minutes

It is 1966 in Brooklyn and life is hard for a group of four young teenage boys. They live in the notorious 'Hell's kitchen', a place run by corruption and gangsters. Although they are on the slow and slippy road to a life a crime they are still young enough to be cheeky and daring gang of boisterous youths.

However, this was all to change when a prank went terribly wrong leading to the unintentional death of of a man emerging from a subway. The group are taken to court and subsequently sent to a reform school where they are terrorised, beaten and abused by a brutal set of guards.

Ten years have past when two of the group come across Sean Nokes, one of their former guards at the reform school, and they gun him down in cold blood. The gang of old must now regroup and fight in the courtroom and, although guilty of the charges laid against them, attempt to clear their names and reap revenge on those guards who had a profound affect on their lives.

The picture is rich with warm colouring which is especially evident during the initial scenes in 60's New York. However, the picture does tend to suffer from graininess and at certain points during the film some small amounts of artifacting were visible. With this disc being one of the early DVD's on the market these problems could be somewhat forgiven from an emerging technology. It was certainly better than a number of other discs available at the time. Although the sound is dialogue based it is handled well. There is very little surround on offer, and lets face it, there is no need for it in a film of this ilk.

This story is supposedly adapted from true story by Lorenzo Carcaterra, and although it was completely denied by the New York authorities, it is a shocking inside to the workings of institutions which are now hopefully truly a thing of the past. True, or not, it is still a remarkable story on how the innocent of childhood was wrenched away from a group of boys.

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