movie film review | chris tookey
 
     
     
 

Guide to Recognising Your Saints

 (15)
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  Guide to Recognising Your Saints Review
Tookey's Rating
2 /10
 
Average Rating
7.66 /10
 
Starring
Robert Downey Jr (pictured right), Rosario Dawson , Shia LaBeouf
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Directed by: Dito Montiel
Written by: Dito Montiel

 
 
 
Released: 2006
   
Genre: DRAMA
RITES-OF-PASSAGE
BIOPIC
   
Origin: US
   
Colour: C
   
Length: 99
 
 


 
Does the world really need yet another picture about growing up on the mean streets of New York? Not on this evidence.
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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Robert Downey Jr is wasted on A Guide To Recognising Your Saints, in which he plays its writer-director Dito Montiel, revisiting the haunts of his youth in Queenís during the 1980s, and confronting his doting mum (Diane Wiest) and resentful father (Chazz Palminteri).

Though some US critics have hailed the younger characters as raw and elemental, they are in fact dreary and stereotypical.

The plot has virtually no forward momentum, and consists of teenagers gradually meeting horrible ends, or not doing so, and itís hard to summon up much interest in folk so conventionally observed.The film comes alive only when the older versions of the characters confront each other. Not for the first time, thereís a terrific performance in a minor part by Rosario Dawson.

Given Ditoís obvious affectionate for his working-class roots, itís odd that he fails to let us know why he leaves and doesnít return for 20 years. My guess is that he got fed up with the endless swearing, bickering and shouting. I certainly did.


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