Years before "Blair Witch Project" and the "Paranormal Activity" movies, we get this picture. Nick Gomez, too, had worked for Hal Hartley a la Tom DiCillo helping out with Jim Jarmusch on "Stranger Than Paradise" -- similar to Kim Deal and Tanya Donelly gestating the Breeders out of the Pixies and Throwing Muses (they used to do sing-a-longs together, in the same touring van), a sign of the times. Here, you get people talking the way people you know talk -- the action seems to take place in 2 or 3 neighborhoods -- and if the action's still hip-hop oriented and a skip past people around your neighborhood, it's still a far cry from the gangsters in "Goodfellas," in that a fistfight's all you really expect to happen. Since everyone's living in a "non-boring" lifestyle -- you certainly won't be bored, if you compare it to your daily life; if you compare it to a cop show and the usual primes and triggers, you might very well be -- and such a state is inherently subjective, at some point, someone's opinions about someone's opinions are gonna reach a certain point, because no-one's touching the wall. Outside of day jobs, school and career -- what do you expect? It might make you nervous, and the un-PC behavior might put some viewers off, a sure sign you're not used to immersing yourself somewhere you'd never really be. Face it, you don't really believe in Hannibal Lector or most gangster films; you can tell by how secure you feel that it's a fictional narrative. Here, you might be looking at the clock nervously and drumming your fingertips on the tabletop. Paradoxically -- or rather, in a way that seems to *reinforce* the heaviness -- the banter is very lively, the kidding around seems to be at a constant, and the "school's out" feeling is so pervasive you can see why people choose to/fall into this life. In the line of "Do the Right Thing" and certain Beastie Boys albums, but you'd have to know what you're looking for: parking for a crime drama will only lead you to dismay. Thinking of Cassavetes would at least help. Enjoy!