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Life Is Hot in Cracktown is a 2009 crime drama film based on Buddy Giovinazzo's eponymous 1993 collection of short stories. Giovinazzo directed and wrote the film.

Life Is Hot in Cracktown
Life is hot in cracktown.jpg
Promotional film poster
Directed byBuddy Giovinazzo
Produced byWilliam Fisch
Larry Rattner
Written byBuddy Giovinazzo
StarringKerry Washington
Shannyn Sossamon
Brandon Routh
Lara Flynn Boyle
Victor Rasuk
Thomas Ian Nicholas
Carly Pope
Mark Webber
Edoardo Ballerini
Ariel Winter
Distributed byLightning Media
Release date
  • June 26, 2009 (2009-06-26)
CountryUnited States


The film intertwines several unsettling stories of people in a Manhattan neighborhood ravaged by crack cocaine.[1][2]

Romeo, a 14-year-old criminal, is the leader of a gang. In the beginning of the movie, he lures his girlfriend, Debbie, to a secluded alley where he and another gang member gang rape her. He leads his gang into robbing and torturing a very sick pensioner, and then steps up to doing a murder-for-hire at the behest of a local drug dealer, unaware of the enormous risks.

Manny and Concetta, a young couple, are desperately trying to rise out of poverty and care for their sick baby. Manny works two jobs—the front desk of a drug-riddled flop house by day and the cash register of a frequently-robbed bodega at night. It hardly matters that he is working so hard because the baby's non-stop crying will not allow him to sleep.

Another young couple, Marybeth and Benny, are both drug addicts. Marybeth is a transgender woman who makes a bit of money as a street prostitute to pay for surgery, and Benny is into very low-paying burglaries. Their principal source of drugs is a well-off trans person, Ridley, who is looking to follow in Marybeth's footsteps.

Young Willy and younger Susie are the much-neglected children of an addict named Mommy, who makes them sleep on the floor of their one-room apartment. Mommy's current boyfriend, a hot-tempered addict named Chaz, makes the children beg on the street for his drug money. Willy's one bright spot is neighbor child Melody, whose mother pimps her out every night. When Chaz and Mommy leave the children behind while they embark on a drug-fueled quest to get more drug money from a relative of Chaz, Melody is picked up by the police. Willy, meanwhile, is sent on a wild goose chase by Betty, an aging prostitute who enjoys tormenting her neighbors.



  1. ^ a b Four Dwell in "Cracktown":
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Six Immigrating to "Cracktown":
  3. ^ Brandon Routh Learns "Life Is Hot in Cracktown":
  4. ^ RZA Says ‘Life Is Hot In Cracktown’

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