Steel City

1 h 33 min2006R
Two brothers (Tom Guiry, Clayne Crawford) must cope with their incarcerated father (John Heard) in this gritty, blue-collar drama. Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival
Brian Jun
America FerreraClayne CrawfordTom Guiry
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
John HeardLaurie MetcalfRaymond J. BarryJames McDanielJamie Ann AllmanHeather McComb
Steel City Productions, iDOCS
R (Restricted)
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3.7 out of 5 stars

15 global ratings

  1. 46% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 24% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 7% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 0% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 23% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

HobopoetReviewed in the United States on April 5, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
Who cares?
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This is a grubby little movie about grubby little people living grubby little lives in a grubby little town in the rust belt. Not a single character is even interesting or has any redeeming value. Would anyone want to know any of them? I don't. They aren't even ambitious enough to rise to the level of petty crime to fund their pathetic lives. Not because they are too moral to resort to crime. They are just too stupid or lazy to think of it. If the movie had a coherent story line about these characters it would at least have had a purpose. But they didn't even bother with that. Sad little people living pointless lives of their own making and not even attempting to make changes. Who cares?
One person found this helpful
JAGReviewed in the United States on June 29, 2008
3.0 out of 5 stars
Small town or not - life's woes and heartaches
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I waited and waited for this particular movie to make it to the DVD circuit. Why? It's set in a location that is real and very close to my hometown. Was it worth it? Well, the story line was rather boring but it was definitely one many experience today. Especially with the economic situation of the local job market, this movie exhibits how "lay-offs" and plant closures, even big time company buy outs,effect the family life style. The cast for this film was great. Enough exposure for the newbies to make a name for themselves but also some good local time for the older actors. Even though the price for this DVD was higher than most, it's worth it. Perhaps it will someday be available at a cut-rate video shop, I'm happy to have spent both the money and the time to watch it. Good job to our young director - a small budget to work with still produced a very true and realistic flick.
2 people found this helpful
deeReviewed in the United States on July 8, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Three and a half
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Grew on me. Started slow but I stuck with it and was rewarded. Subtle acting and direction blossomed as the film went on. Understated and well done. More please Mr. Jun.
Larry FordReviewed in the United States on October 19, 2019
1.0 out of 5 stars
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I have no idea how this movie got such a high rating. It was beyond a doubt the most boring movie I'd ever seen.
Isaac KnopfReviewed in the United States on January 27, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Defying the constructs of Hollywood film—STEEL CITY stands strong and independent.
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STEEL CITY defies the odds stacked against indie film.

This small-budget Midwestern production stands strong with heart and realism. Jun succeeds in crafting a story supported by characters that live and breath blue-collar life in the heart of America. The future of independent film shines bright.
One person found this helpful
edward gibsonReviewed in the United States on August 5, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
its good
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this is life its hard
RosemaryReviewed in the United States on September 2, 2017
4.0 out of 5 stars
Four Stars
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Good movie
Roland E. ZwickReviewed in the United States on June 7, 2010
3.0 out of 5 stars
simple but affecting working-class drama

Superior performances are the hallmark of "Steel City," a moody, gritty, low-keyed drama set in the economically depressed area of the Upper Midwest. P.J. Lee (Tom Guiry) is a fitfully employed young man with an assortment of obstacles to overcome: his father's in jail on a vehicular manslaughter charge; his mom's re-married to a cop; his older brother's a philandering jerk whose wife walks out on him; and his girlfriend has a weight problem which makes P.J. reluctant to fully commit to her. He's also coping with the guilt of having been at least partially responsible for the fatal accident that his dad is claiming was all his fault.

Though most of the screen time is taken up with the travails that P.J. is facing and the growing up he is forced to do as a result, the movie's true emotional focus is on the lengths a largely absent father will go to in an effort to redeem himself in the eyes of his son - even if that means having to sacrifice his own freedom to bring that redemption about. As the film's writer and director, Brian Jun demonstrates a nice feel for the look and flavor of the movie's wintry locale and for the tempo and rhythm of the characters' lives.

"Steel City" is sure to get lost in the shuffle of bigger and grander independent and not-so-independent films out there, but the authentic performances - by Guiry, John Heard, Raymond J. Barry, Clayne Crawford, Laurie Metcalf ("Roseanne") and America Ferreira (virtually unrecognizable out of her Ugly Betty get-up) - and sturdy filmmaking make it a movie well worth checking out.
One person found this helpful
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