Brooklyn Boy by R. J. Cardullo | Script Revolution

Brooklyn Boy

The protagonist of "Brooklyn Boy" knows he can’t go home again. All he can really do is think about it—about the influence on his life of Brooklyn, the Mafia, Catholicism, and World War II.

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126pp

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The script of "Brooklyn Boy" details the main character’s Italian-American beginnings in the New York of the 1950s and the profound effect that his extended, working-class background has had on his life.

So great has this effect been that, as the central character of "Brooklyn Boy" ages, he finds that he thinks less of the momentous history through which he has lived, or of the intellectual life he has enjoyed, than of some things far more permanent, profound, and primordial: the people and places he knew as a youth, and that knew him; the war that traumatized his father and several of his uncles; the criminal element that pervaded his Brooklyn neighborhood and introduced itself into his family; the boxing he did and the baseball he played, the movies he loved, the teachers he revered; the English his family learned as well as the Italian he unlearned, or lost in translation; and the religion of his youth that he abandoned, yet that did not abandon him. The protagonist knows that he can’t go home again: all he can really do is think about it, which he does so eloquently in "Brooklyn Boy".

Set in New York and Miami and seen through the eyes of its young male protagonist, "Brooklyn Boy" figuratively combines The Wonder Years with The Sopranos. Put another way, this seriocomic coming-of-age drama places Fellini’s Amarcord in an American setting. Brooklyn Boy also features Amarcord’s requisite gallery of “characters”: in this case, Tommy the Inch, Ravin’ Dave, Fast Frankie, Mario the sex maniac, Grandpa Luigi, and the like.

"Brooklyn Boy" features a first-person narrator on the soundtrack, together with that narrator’s alter ego in the picture itself. On screen, however, this character—the protagonist himself—will remain chiefly an observer; the real focus will be, not so much on the narrator, as on what he saw. The uprooted protagonist/narrator of "Brooklyn Boy", Bobby Randazzo, knows that he can’t go home again. All he can really do is think about it—about the quadruple influence on his early life of Brooklyn, the Mafia, Catholicism, and the Second World War.

Submitted: April 11, 2020
Last Updated: April 20, 2020

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R. J. Cardullo's picture

The Writer: R. J. Cardullo

A former university film teacher, I turned to screenwriting several years ago. I have also written film criticism for many publications. A New Yorker by birth, I grew up in Miami and was educated at the University of Florida, Tulane, and Yale. My last U.S. address was in Milford, Connecticut; I am now an expatriate residing in Scandinavia. Many of my scripts (both long and short) are adaptations of lesser-known works by well-known authors. I am happy to re-write, collaborate, or write on demand. Thanks kindly for any attention you can give my work. Go to bio

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