|The Dangerous Lives Of Altar Boys|
Emile Hirsch, Kieran Culkin, Jena Malone, Jodie Foster, Vincent D'Onofrio
Widescreen; closed caption; audio commentary by director Peter Care and screenwriter Jeff Stockwell; audio commentary of animated sequences by animation producer Todd McFarlane; making-of featurette; interviews with cast and filmmakers.
|An enterprising twist animated sequences designed by comic-book illustrator Todd McFarlane ("Spawn") gives tang to director Peter Care's perceptive coming-of-age story about a circle of teenage boys at a Southern parochial school during the '70s. Two of the students, Francis (Emile Hirsch) and Tim (Kieran Culkin), are particularly angry about the repressive environment mandated by one of their teachers, a rigid, by-the-Good-Book nun (Jodie Foster, doing austere). So they plan elaborate pranks to vent their rage. They also create a malicious comic book that depicts the boys as superheroes and the nun and other faculty members as nefarious villains. One might quibble with the graphic choices made for the cartoon segments used to bring the comic to life with a style derived from '80s independent comics and Japanese anime. But the fantasies feed the film's pathos. Jena Malone, as a distraught girl Francis adores, and Vincent D'Onofrio, as a kindly priest, round out a worthy cast.|