It seems that there are one or two films like David Mackenzie's Starred Up
every year: Films that rack up an impressive array of festival selections - in this case Telluride, Toronto and Tribeca - and nearly universal critical acclaim and yet somehow seem to run strangely under the radar. Here's hoping Tribeca Film can stir up the sort of attention Starred Up
deserves for its release.
19-year-old Eric (Jack O'Connell, star of the upcoming UNBROKEN), arrogant and ultra-violent, is prematurely transferred to the same adult prison facility as his estranged father (Ben Mendelsohn, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES). As his explosive temper quickly finds him enemies in both prison authorities and fellow inmates -- and his already volatile relationship with his father is pushed past breaking point -- Eric is approached by a volunteer psychotherapist (Rupert Friend, "Homeland"), who runs an anger management group for prisoners. Torn between gang politics, prison corruption, and a glimmer of something better, Eric finds himself in a fight for his own life, unsure if his own father is there to protect him or join in punishing him. Written by prison system therapist Jonathan Asser, STARRED UP is a merciless, uncompromising portrayal of a dehumanizing life behind bars, and the most accomplished film of David Mackenzie's career; as father and son, Mendelsohn and O'Connell give extraordinary performances, charting a path that resembles Greek tragedy.
The freshly released US trailer for this one is pounding, punishing stuff and more than enough to demonstrate why so many have raved so much about the film. Take a look below.
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