An Angry Boy Image

An Angry Boy

By Alan Ng | June 4, 2024

Human beings have a way to turn pain into something good. In Andrew Fitzgerald’s thriller, An Angry Boy, a young teen turns his pain into a severe beat down on evil. Mild-mannered Owen (Scott Calenberger) goes to school by day with his best friend, Ricky (Caleb Lowery), and by night, Owen dons a hood and fights crime at night. Owen’s motivation comes from his kidnapping as a child by pedo cult leader Andy (Eric Roberts) and his kidnapper Mark (Thomas Cambridge).

Owen has a great deal of rage pent up inside himself, and much of that rage comes from the suppressed memories of his kidnapping. As Owen seeks to unlock his past with the help of his therapist, kidnapper Mark returns home invasion style. He binds and gags Owen and his mother, Kathy (Laura Frenzer). Well, things don’t work out so well for Kathy as she is murdered in the end, but Ricky saves Owen.

Knowing that Mark is out there and could be the key to uncovering his past. Owen heads out into the forest to track down his abuser, Mark, for both revenge and closure. Unfortunately, Mark knows he’s coming.

“Owen heads out into the forest to track down his abuser, Mark, for both revenge and closure.”

An Angry Boy covers a great deal of ground for a low-budget indie production. It opens as a teen vigilante story with our hero Owen and Rickey playing the man in the chair…kind of. Then it goes full thriller with the brutal killing of Owen’s mom and Owen’s beating. The story then carries us into Owen’s past and slowly ramps up the thrills as we delve into his abusive cult past and the revenge that both Owen and the cult wish to extend to one another.

The trick to films like An Angry Boy is to make what little you have to produce the film look like a multi-million dollar production without tipping its financial hand. Stalwart indie supporter Eric Roberts is again excellent as the cult leader, bringing his acting flair to every role—no matter how small.

The youthful Calenberger and Lowery admirably carry the film from start to finish. Calenberger is youthful and troubled, and we feel his brutal arc right to the end. No one is safe in a thriller, and every character has to make tough and deadly choices to survive.

When it comes to independent thrillers, I always seek out stories that really test their characters by putting them in intense and nerve-wracking situations. An Angry Boy manages to toe the line between thriller and horror while delivering exactly that kind of gripping and unsettling experience along the way. The way it pushes its characters to their limits while maintaining this delicate balance between genres really sets it apart for me.

An Angry Boy (2024)

Directed and Written: Andrew Fitzgerald

Starring: Scott Callenberger, Caleb Lowery, Eric Roberts, Thomas Cambridge, etc.

Movie score: 8/10

An Angry Boy Image

"…youthful and troubled, and we feel his brutal arc right to the end."

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