Life Is Hot in Cracktown (2009) - Rotten Tomatoes

Life Is Hot in Cracktown (2009)

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Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Based on writer/director Buddy Giovinazzo's novel of the same name, Life Is Hot in Cracktown explores how crack cocaine infiltrated the streets of urban America by following the journeys of four people whose lives are on a tragic collision course. Pre-op transsexual Marybeth (Kerry Washington) is working as a prostitute in order to save enough money to make her transformation complete. She lives with her lover, Benny, a small-time burglar, whom she hopes to marry after her final operation. Meanwhile, Manny (Victor Rasuk) is busy pulling double shifts while his wife, Concetta (Shannyn Sossamon), cares for their sickly infant son in their run-down apartment. By night Manny works at a 24-hour bodega frequented by junkies, drug dealers, and prostitutes, and by day keeps the peace as a security guard at a welfare hotel. One of the residents at that hotel is Willy, a ten-year-old boy who lives with his mother (Illeana Douglas) and her abusive boyfriend. Willy begs for money on the street so he and Susie can get some fast food. But it's dangerous out there, because volatile gangster Romeo (Evan Ross) is still searching the streets for his brother's killer, and he won't hesitate to terrorize anyone unfortunate enough to cross his warpath. Lara Flynn Boyle, Brandon Routh, Desmond Harrington, and RZA co-star.

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Cast

Evan Ross
as Romeo
Brandon Routh
as Sizemore
Lara Flynn Boyle
as Betty McBain
The Rza
as Sammy
Omar Regan
as Cremont
Ten Travis
as Ceasar
Marci Canipe
as Melody's Mom
Richard Portnow
as Guy From 4K
Shawn McGill
as Tiny Pinta
Jeremy West
as Mr. Rutherford
Hope Olaide Wilson
as Girl in Closet
Quddus
as Terrance
Paul Mabon
as Marybeth's Father
Bryan Becker
as Pepperton
Luke LaFontaine
as The Beret
Joseph Rye
as Dr. Clark
Jamie Rae
as Pregnant Woman at Party
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Critic Reviews for Life Is Hot in Cracktown

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (2)

While Giovinazzo's crude approach undercuts his occasional stab at gravitas, Cracktown's cast keeps things in the ballpark of relatable humanity.

July 1, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Life goes far past the boiling point for most of the characters in this hilariously overwrought ghetto soap opera from cult writer-director Buddy Giovinazzo.

June 25, 2009 | Full Review…
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

There are no positive characters in Cracktown. No voice of reason; just the reality of dire circumstances, which cannot be tied up in a pretty Hollywood bow.

July 2, 2009 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
BET.com

One part Crash and one part Menace II Society.

June 26, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
Boxoffice Magazine

Aside from tremendous performances given by Washington and Rasuk, the bleakness in 'Cracktown' doesn't offer a solution that leaves a positive outlook on life.

June 26, 2009 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
BlackFilm.com

About as credible as a middle school production of Death of a Salesman. The unspectacular storylines plod along, dragged down by lackluster performances and sloppy direction.

June 25, 2009 | Rating: 1.5/5 | Full Review…
Metromix.com

Audience Reviews for Life Is Hot in Cracktown

This is garbage. There's no reason to follow the lives of a single character involved, they're all one-dimensional losers. The writer doesn't convey anything more than an outsider's glimpse into the subject matter. This movie relies on nothing more than shock value, and it's about as subtle as a sledgehammer. All that's on display is a bunch of idiots abusing themselves, children, women, and the elderly. This is void of any artistic value, avoid.

Jason Calvin
Jason Calvin

Super Reviewer

The great Buddy Giovinazzo returns after a painfully long hiatus with this fantastically titled masterpiece. It's as if Abel Ferrara and Robert Altman joined forces, only with that nihilistic Buddy touch. Each separate story is compelling with great performances all around (I especially like that Desmond Harrington kid. Great actor). The audience really cares about most of the characters, and knowing Buddy is writing their stories, truly fears for their safety. Highly recommended for those who love gritty, depressing and downbeat stories.

Christopher  Brown
Christopher Brown

Super Reviewer

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