The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys
The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys is a coming of age story of a group of 8th grade friends growing up in the '70s in the south. The boys attend St. Agatha's with the evil one-legged Sister Assumpta (Jodie Foster) as their teacher. With an awesome opening scene of the two main characters, Francis Doyle (Emile Hirsch) and Tim Sullivan (Kieran Culkin) 'doing their math homework' by cutting down a telephone pole with the use of triangulation you already see their careless, just-for-fun destructive personalities.
Francis is in love with Margie Flynn (Jena Malone) who has a dark and troubled past. Margie shares her deep dark secret with Francis, showing how much she cares about him. While the two grow closer we see how this relationship effects the boys' friendship.
Tim doesn't have the best home life so, seeking attention, as well as just being a 8th grade trouble-making boy, he comes up with all kinds of tricks and stunts to occupy their time. Tim comes up with the ultimate prank, one so wild that it requires much planning, construction and experimenting.
The boys create their own comic called The Atomic Trinity with a character for each role mostly seeking revenge on Sister Assumpta, "the one-legged bitch". The film interestingly transitions from live action scenes to animated comic scenes. This was kind of a strange surprise for me the first time I saw it, but it's really pretty neat. Francis is the mastermind behind The Atomic Trinity which serves as a way show his hopes and emotions.
The Dangerous Lives of Alter Boys is full of pranks, laughs, wit and heartbreak. This movie opened many doors for me--I fell in love with Kieran Culkin and watched everything else with him that I could find and I kind of hated Jena Malone when I first saw this I soon realized that she's been in A LOT of really good movies! As for Emile Hirsch, he's the one that led me to watch this in the first place, he is AWESOME!!