DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

BOARDWALK (director: Stephen Verona; screenwriter: Leigh Chapman; cinematographer: Billy Williams; editor: Thom Noble; music:  William S. Fischer ; cast: Ruth Gordon (Becky Rosen), Lee Strasberg (David Rosen), Janet Leigh (Florence Cohen), Joe Silver  (Leo Rosen), Eddie Barth (Eli Rosen), Kim Delgado (Strut); Runtime: 98; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: George Willoghby; Atlantic Releasing; 1979)

"Bleak and unpleasant film."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A realistic drama that leaves a bitter taste about the effects of changing neighborhoods in Brooklyn and the spread of racism. Theater luminaries Lee Strasberg and Ruth Gordon co-star as a loving long-time married Jewish couple for nearly 50 years. They find it hard to get by in their senior years as their Coney Island neighborhood decays and becomes crime-ridden with black gangs. Black gang leader Kim Delgado has made Coney Island his turf, and shakes down merchants for protection money. When restaurant owner Strasberg refuses to pay for protection, the pic turns violent and ugly and anti-Semitic.

Stephen Verona ("The Lords of Flatbush"/"Pipe Dreams"/"Talking Wells") manipulatively directs this bleak and unpleasant film into a Death Wish revenge finale, where the deserving bad guys get a taste of their own medicine. It's fiercely written by Leigh Chapman.

Janet Leigh is the couple's dutiful daughter.

REVIEWED ON 9/13/2015       GRADE: B-

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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