A Brother's Kiss

  • 1997
  • 1 HR 32 MIN
  • R
  • Crime, Drama

This exploitative morality tale, set in the '70s, manages to squander an excellent cast -- including John Leguizamo, Marisa Tomei, Adrian Pasdar and Michael Rapaport -- a bopping soundtrack and some gritty New York locations. East Harlem white kids Mick (Michael Raynor) and Lex (Nick Chinlund), the sons of alcoholic nympho Doreen (Cathy Moriarty, doing...read more

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This exploitative morality tale, set in the '70s, manages to squander an excellent cast -- including John Leguizamo, Marisa Tomei, Adrian Pasdar and Michael Rapaport -- a bopping soundtrack and some gritty New York locations. East Harlem white kids Mick (Michael Raynor)

and Lex (Nick Chinlund), the sons of alcoholic nympho Doreen (Cathy Moriarty, doing her best Gena Rowlands) and an absentee dad, are left to raise themselves on the rough-and-tumble streets. A fateful late-night run-in with an abusive undercover cop leaves younger brother Mick traumatized and Lex

in a juvenile detention center; when Lex comes home, everything has changed. Mick -- bizarrely enough -- aspires to be a policeman, while Lex tries to parlay his hoop skills into a career. Lex's ambitions are quickly derailed when he knocks up a pretty homegirl (Rosie Perez) from the hood, and he

becomes a drug courier and, inevitably, a crackhead. Writer/director Seth Zvi Rosenfeld struggles to pull off the dramatic equivalent of a hat trick -- pulling an uplifting lesson out of bathos -- but, as all aspiring illusionists quickly learn, if it looks contrived, it isn't magic. Having the

characters crack jokes every now and then doesn't help matters in the least, and while the emotional buttons get a workout, a faint aura of anthropological fascination -- along with no small measure of self-congratulatory zeal -- hangs over the proceedings.

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  • Released: 1997
  • Rating: R
  • Review: This exploitative morality tale, set in the '70s, manages to squander an excellent cast -- including John Leguizamo, Marisa Tomei, Adrian Pasdar and Michael Rapaport -- a bopping soundtrack and some gritty New York locations. East Harlem white kids Mick (M… (more)

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