Directed and written by Craig Ross Jr, Blue Hill Avenue is a 2001 crime/drama film that follows four friends who enter the drug trade in the neighborhood of Roxbury, Boston in the late 1970s. Tristan (Allen Payne), Money (Aaron D. Spears), E-Bone (William L Johnson), and Simon (Michael Taliferro) rise the drug business with the permission of South End crime boss Benny (Clarence Williams III). Tristan keeps his double life from his clueless parents, however as the 1970s passes to the 2000s, a police investigation threatens to ignite a violent feud among the tight-knit friends. This Black independent film is Rated R for strong violence, language, drug content and sexuality.
In 2001, at the Acapulco Black Film Festival, Craig Ross Jr won an award for Best U.S. Film. Following in 2002 at the Black Reels Awards, Allen Payne won an award for Best Independent Actor.
The film itself is a one for film history, a true timeless and beautiful crime saga. It may glorify violence and vengeance, yet the film is not naïve; it shows how the complexities of consequential and harsh situations can change the relationships of a group friends. Action-packed and filled with plot twists, all of the actors in this film breathe life into their characters, most notably Allen Payne and Clarence Williams III. Fore anyone who is a fan of crime films, such as The Godfather series, New Jack City, A Bronx Tale, GoodFellas, Dead Presidents, Paid In Full, this film is a must watch.
Blue Hill Avenue will have you guessing what’s next. Where I come from, this film was true to life; maybe I am biased because I came from a similar background just like the film characters. Yet I made a choice to not go down that route, but there are people who choose the route of crime and corruption, and try to find their way out yet a lot don’t succeed very well in the end. It will also teach you life lessons about making mistakes, to becoming a better person than society leads you to be, to have love for your own solid moral values.
Blue Hill Avenue is a terrific film. When people watch this movie they will make a choice too. I enjoyed watching this movie, hopefully others will feel the same about as well.