Gang Boy (1955) is a gem of an “educational film” from the Ozzie y Harriet Era by genre master Sid Davis. “This 50s film is surprisingly sympathetic in its portrayal of a Chicano gang leader and the events leading up to the formation of the gang,” writes reviewer Christine Hennig.
“The gang leader, Danny, narrates his story of him and his friends growing up in poverty and neglect, gradually turning into a gang in order to strike back at a harsh world. They have constant run-ins with a white gang and eventually things threaten to erupt in a major gang war. Police and social workers try to organize a truce, and Danny, after much soul-searching, agrees to go along, hoping to ultimately make things better for the younger children in the neighborhood. The film ends happily, with both sides agreeing to a truce, and ultimately forming clubs which do community service work. Like Age 13, you don’t totally buy this film’s happy ending, but it’s not quite as pat as the other film’s. The film is also an interesting historical record of west-coast 50s gang life.”
There’s going to be a rumble tonght!
This, along with Age 13, represent Sid Davis at his best. I’m not too sure whether he grew from his other films, or just hit a zenith with these two films. (looking at his IMDB listing.. I’d say the latter).
Gang boy tells of Danny, how he grew up with a bunch of boys that eventually became a gang and feuds with another Gang, until the law enforcement finally talks some sense into them.
Cinematically, this film is spectacular, great color and the kids in the film all do a great job in acting. On the down side (what little there is) the fight scenes are laughable and there’s still some rather odd Dolores Wishman editing going on there,, Nevertheless, this is a MUST SEE on this site!
In the credits, Davis thanks the Red Hearts, the Red Dragons, the Sharkies, the Vikings and the Lancers. Any OGs from these clikas still around?