This Boy’s Life
1993
***½
Director: Michael Caton-Jones
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Ellen Barkin, Jonah Blechman

A touching coming-of-age story set in the late 1950s. A teenage boy and his mother try to find happiness, but her new husband is not the kind gentleman he seems at first. Leonardo DiCaprio carries the film with his excellent breakthrough performance, but the abusive stepfather played by Robert De Niro becomes a frustratingly one-dimensional villain in the second half. Based on Tobias Wolff’s autobiographical book.