White Boy Rick
Ah, Donna Summer and an old timey 80’s feel. The trailer for this film was decent for that. Also, we are all still trying to see what Matthew McConaughey is doing next, right? As long as its not those weird Lincoln commercials of course. When you think about this is a fairly interesting true story. A 14 year old informant for the FBI who also becomes a kingpin? That’s insane. While there are positives to look at in this film and its well acted on all fronts, I think this story could have been presented better.
The film is the true story of the young life of Richard Wershe Jr. also know as White Boy Rick. His dad is an arms dealer and his sister a drug addict, so he does what he can to get by. He becomes involved in selling guns and dealing and soon becomes an informant for the FBI. Things escalate for him as his responsibilities increase and the street life becomes life threatening. The title character is played by newcomer, Richie Merritt. The film also stars Bel Powley and Jennifer Jason Leigh.
I think the film was well acted from all involved. McConaughey continues to be on top of his game and his own renaissance and Merritt and Powley are great. The basis for the story is interesting but I feel like the film itself doesn’t present itself in an interesting manner. I never thought I was watching something great and I feel like there is an under utilization of talented side actors as well. It was just hard to connect with the film and feel a true emphatic reaction or care for Rick.
I don’t know if this is one of the cases where the story reads better on paper than on film but that may be the case here. Its fun when Powley or McConaughey are on screen but I think overall it was hard to identify with or get invested in the characters. I think the most hard hitting moments were the texts right before the credits. It doesn’t matter so much this was just something to watch to prepare for the more anticipated releases of the week (A Simple Favor and The Predator).