Review of Home of the Giants as part of its coverage of the Chicago
International Film Festival 2007
believable and genuinely suspenseful"
by Rob Christopher
sure to read the original review
of the Giants
is skillful, believable and genuinely suspenseful. Osment plays Gar, a journalist
on the school paper who serves as unofficial mascot to the basketball team's hotshot
star, Matt, who uses him to to get rides around town and stroke his ego. When
Matt's no-good brother gets out of prison and hatches a plan for a robbery, you
know things are going to go south pretty fast. And when a girl on the school paper
realizes something's fishy, she starts doing a little digging.
in Indiana but mostly shot in North Carolina, local director Rusty Gorman's movie
is a modest affair, which makes its clear-eyed dissection of high school hypocrisy
and fresh-faced corruption that much more satisfying. Riverton High is the kind
of place where the journalism teacher angrily explains that "we don't write
articles that bad-mouth the team," while every post-game celebration seems
to center on the local Wendy's. Gar faces a tug of war between his sense of right
and wrong and his hero-worship for Matt. The ending tries to have things both
ways, but it's a minor flaw in a movie that consistently offers up surprises.
When the story goes into thriller mode it actually works because these are well-drawn
characters instead of just plot devices.