Sleight

Image result for sleight movie poster

Sleight came up on iTunes and I wanted to see it.  I had hoped to see this when it was out in theaters,  but it never came to my area.  Of course, these days there are a ton of outlets that provide movie content besides the theater.

The story is a small one but that is not a knock against it.  Bo (Jacob Latimore) is a street magician by day, but has to supplement that income by dealing drugs at night.  He is the sole guardian of his little sister Tina (Storm Reid) and his love for the sister is apparent.  Bo meets the beautiful Holly (Seychelle Gabriel) who also has a tough life with a physically abusive parent.   After being forced into a violent act by the head drug dealer Angelo (Dulé Hill), Bo comes up with a plan to fix it so he can rip off Angelo and get out of the drug dealing that was doomed from the start.

Oh, did I mention that Bo also has some electromagnetic power?  I’m not too sure about the origin of the powers, but there is some indication in the film that he cuts into his shoulder to implant some kind of electromagnet to help with his magic tricks.  Honestly, the film does touch upon the background of the powers, but it is not a major part of the story.  It is actually just a part of the character.

And lets speak about the character of Bo.  He is a very interesting protagonist as he is not the most honest of people.  He makes some choices that really question his person character.  Even his plan to rip off Angelo felt like a stupid idea.  That was contrasted by a young man who clearly loved his little sister and was extremely tender with his girlfriend.  The fact that he does some of the things that he does in this movie made me wonder exactly how much of a hero Bo really was.   I think those tender moments went a long way in making sure that the audience did not turn on Bo and gave them a reason to root for him.

Jacob Latimore is very solid in this movie, which completely depends on the character of Bo to carry the film.  He was very subtle and restrained consistently and brought a real emotion to the character.  We like Bo so it is easier to excuse the bad judgement as youthful mistakes.  The relationship with Tina and Holly grounded the youngster and helped us overlook the fact that he did chop off a guy’s hand.

The final confrontation with Angelo is fun and the final scene of the movie leads you to wonder exactly what was going on.  I doubt that a film that barely made any money will receive a sequel, despite obviously being set up for one.

The film is very small and quiet and that was a welcome tone.  This could have been big and bombastic, and I don’t think we would have liked Bo as much as we did. The humanizing of the hero helped this become a much better film.

3.3 stars

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