Movie Review - Jackie K Cooper
"Sins of Our Youth" (Huffington Pictures)
Now that Lucas Till is a television star thanks to his role as the new "MacGyver", some of his earlier movie roles are making the scene. "Sins of Our Youth" is such a film. In it Till plays a high school student who gets involved in the fatal shooting of a twelve year old. Till displays some charisma in the movie but his true star potential is not on display. The movie piques your interest but doesn't totally deliver on its promise of being a modern "Rebel Without A Cause."
Tyler (Trill) and David (Joel Courtney) are brothers. Scott (Michael Musso) and Carlo (Bridger Zadina) are their friends. After a night of playing video games the four friends head to Tyler and David's house because their parents are away for a few days. Once there they decide to take down the reindeer display on their roof and use the "animals" for target practice. To get guns they break into their father's gun locker.
The four boys all participate in a mass shooting of the guns and when they have finished discover they have shot and killed a twelve year old boy. The rest of the film deals with what they can do to escape punishment. Some of the schemes they hatch are pretty bizarre.
This movie falls in line with a lot of other movies about teens in that adult supervision is non-existent. The adults who are shown are drunks who could care less about what their children are doing. The youth are busy drinking alcohol and using drugs. The message of the movie appears to be the kids have no concept of the real world, and have too much time and money on their hands.
Till's Tyler is the leader of the group by default. None of the others have a clue as to how to act responsibly. But Tyler is weak also and never comes up with a cogent plan on how they should handle this situation. David is painted as the conscience of the group and acts the most level-headed of any of them. Still he defers to his older brother on all things.
All of the young actors play their parts satisfactorily and at times add depth to a film that treats the situation much too superficially. Each time the makers of the movie seem on the verge of justifying the story it falls apart. There are several moments of edginess and drama, but the script can not sustain them for long.
The movie is rated R for profanity and violence.
If you want to see Lucas Till's star on the rise performance then by all means get to a theater for this film. Or if you want to see a movie that tries to address the problems of gun violence and unsupervised teens, check it out. There is an honest effort to tell a relevant story, but it just fades and fails in too many places.
I scored "Sins of Our Youth" a gunned down 4 out of 10.
Jackie K Cooper