BOY A (D: John Crowley, 100 min) Opens Friday (August 22). Rating: NN
Boy A is a potentially interesting story suffocated by a severe shortage of dramatic tension and drab storytelling.
A young man works to build a new life with a new identity after a long stretch in prison for a horrible childhood crime. With no great difficulty, he gets a job, friends and a girlfriend. Flashbacks hint so broadly at the past crime that we've guessed all but the details long before it's revealed. Meanwhile, we wait for the axe to fall on his present life. By the time it does, the movie's almost over.
Director John Crowley does little to hold our attention. Scenes run on. Portentous pauses drag out the banal dialogue. Occasionally out-of-focus visuals present ever drearier shades of brown. The editing rhythm only rarely breaks its plodding pace.
As the titular boy, Andrew Garfield specializes in awkward embarrassment and puppy-dog happiness. He's competent, but not very interesting.