This Boy's Life

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This Boy's Life ★★★ 1993 (R)

In 1957, Carolyn (Barkin) and her teenage son Toby (DiCaprio) are in search of a new life, far from her abusive ex-boy-friend. In the town of Concrete, just outside Seattle, she meets ex-military man Dwight (De Niro), a slick but none too suave mechanic who might be the answer to her dreams, but then again, he might not. Nicely crafted performances from all, but keep your eye on DiCaprio (great in his first major role) as the confused and abused teen divided between dreams of prep school and the allure of the goingnowhere crowd. Based on the memoirs of Tobias Wolff; director Caton-Jones sensitively illustrates the skewed understanding of masculinity in the 1950s. Vintage soundtrack takes you back. 115m/C VHS, DVD . Robert De Niro, Ellen Barkin, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Blechman, Eliza Dushku, Chris Cooper, Carla Gugino, Zachary Ansley, Tracey Ellis, Kathy Kinney, Gerrit Graham; D: Michael Caton-Jones; W: Robert Getchell; C: David Watkin; M: Carter Burwell.