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DVD Review: The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete

February 18, 2014

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD CoverThe Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete – A Level Film Release

https://www.facebook.com/MisterandPete

Blu-ray Release Date: February 18th, 2014

Rated 14A for language, drug use and sexual content

Running time: 109 minutes

 

George Tillman Jr. (dir.)

 

Michael Starrbury (writer)

 

Mark Isham (music)

Alicia Keys (music)

 

Skylan Brooks as Mister

Ethan Dizon as Pete

Jennifer Hudson as Mom Gloria

Jordin Sparks as Alice

Anthony Mackie as Kris

Jeffrey Wright as Henry

 

Our reviews below:

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The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD Review By John Corrado

*** (out of 4)

After his mother (Jennifer Hudson) is arrested for drugs, the 13-year-old Mister (Skylan Brooks) evades the police along with his 9-year-old friend Pete (Ethan Dizon), and the two kids are left to fend for themselves over a sweltering summer in the Brooklyn projects.  They struggle to find food and stay safe, as Mister dreams of going to an audition and becoming an actor in Beverly Hills.

 

With a good soundtrack that includes new music from Alicia Keys, and sensitive direction from George Tillman Jr., The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is a powerful and often heartbreaking film about the aftermath of drug addiction and the effects of extreme poverty.  The entire cast is solid, and the film is carried on the slender shoulders of newcomers Skylan Brooks and Ethan Dizon, turning in a pair of remarkably affecting performances.

 

The DVD includes commentary with the director and two leads, deleted scenes and several featurettes.

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The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD Review By Erin V.

*** (out of 4)

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete follows two kids who are left fending for themselves one summer in inner-city Brooklyn.  13-year-old Mister (Skylan Brooks) has dreams of becoming an actor and getting his ticket out of the way he’s been living, but when his mother (Jennifer Hudson) is arrested for possession of drugs, he evades authorities in fear of being taken to the Riverview group home.

 

Meanwhile, the 9-year-old Pete (Ethan Dizon), who also has nowhere to go, ends up staying with Mister as well.  As the two of them struggle to make ends meet, get enough food, and avoid the child protection services, we are taken along a journey that is made all the more powerful when shown through the eyes of a child.

 

The film is carried brilliantly by the nuanced and mature performances of its two very young leads, and as we come to know the two characters, it puts a very real face to poverty.  This is one that deserves to be sought out now that it’s on DVD.  A well-made and simple story that says so much.

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The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD Review By Nicole

*** (out of 4)

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is a believable film about two children forced to fend for themselves.  When 13-year-old Mister’s (Skylan Brooks) mother (Jennifer Hudson) is arrested for heroin possession, him and his 9-year-old best friend Pete (Ethan Dizon) hide from the police, to avoid ending up in the local shelter.  They manage to survive the dangerous heat wave, with only Pete’s hamster as company.  They try to avoid dangerous grownups, while stealing food to survive.  But despite their predicament, the children still look out for others, including a homeless veteran.

 

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is very compelling.  Reminiscent of Canadian YA author Deborah Ellis’ writing, this film captures extreme poverty from a child’s perspective, in a very real and matter of fact way, while still maintaining a sense of hope.  Young actors Skylan Brooks and Ethan Dizon are wonderful in their breakout roles.  They play their characters with a perfect mix of poignancy and humour.

 

Despite the age of the characters, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is not for children, due to its subject matter.  However, this film is a good choice for high schoolers, as it creates awareness of social issues impacting youth.  Hopefully, this film will encourage people to reach out to children in need.

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The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD Review By Maureen

*** (out of 4)

With the words ‘inevitable’ and ‘defeat’ in the title you pretty much figure that things aren’t going to go well for the title characters, Mister and Pete.  The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete isn’t a story of sweet happy endings or the cute antics of kids outwitting bad guys on their own.  This isn’t Home Alone.  But what The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete does share with that classic film is a solid coming of age story with child actors who carry the film.

 

Mister (Skylan Brooks) is a thirteen year old who lives in community housing with his drug abusing mother (Jennifer Hudson).  When she is arrested, Mister and nine year old Pete (Ethan Dizon), who they had been babysitting, hide from the authorities to keep from being sent to Riverview, a child protection shelter.  The pair spend the sweltering New York summer evading bullies, gangs and police all while trying to scrounge up enough food and money for the two of them to survive on their own.

 

Mister discovers strength he didn’t know he had, and Pete trusts Mister to look out for him the way a brother would.  The bond that develops between them is touching.  While their world of poverty doesn’t magically disappear over the course of the film, a sense of hope through their perseverance takes shape.

 

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete works due to the wonderfully believable performances from the two young lead actors.  Skylan Brooks and Ethan Dizon will both have strong careers ahead of them if they continue to turn out this level of work.  The supporting adult cast, including the always good Jennifer Hudson, is also strong.

 

Check out The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete for a realistic look at child poverty and excellent performances from the young lead actors.

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The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete DVD Review By Tony

*** (out of 4)

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete begins on the last day of school. Having just failed the eighth grade, the 13 year old boy from the Brooklyn NY projects called Mister (Skylan Brooks) returns home to find his mother Gloria (Jennifer Hudson) high on heroin and the nine year old Korean American Pete (Ethan Dizon) left in her care. Mister is disgusted by his mother’s prostitution and the lack of money for food. When the police raid their place and take Gloria away on drug charges, the boys hide for fear of seizure by the local child protection officer (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje). Wary of help offered by former neighbour Alice (Jordin Sparks), Mister and Pete attempt over the next few weeks to survive the hazards of the street, including a gang of thieves, the pimp Kris (Anthony Mackie), a local store owner (Kenneth Maharaj) and a homeless vet (Jeffrey Wright) competing for handouts.

 

With a fine cast led by brilliant performances from the two leading actors, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is a relentlessly bleak but hopeful tale of bonding and survival. Despite its harsh language and situations, it is recommended viewing for mature teens and anyone interested in the issues of inner city life.

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Consensus: A powerful and heartbreaking look at poverty in Brooklyn, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete is carried by remarkable performances from promising young newcomers Skylan Brooks and Ethan Dizon.  *** (Out of 4)

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