A couple of rebellious Catholic school boys play a mean trick on a pious, peg-legged nun and end up in a place that is very far from heaven.

(Now in stores)

CAST: Emile Hirsch, Kieran Culkin, Jena Malone, Jodie Foster, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jake Richardson

DIRECTOR: Peter Care

"'The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys' digs into the flaming recesses of the adolescent mind with such acuity, compassion and good humor that it will plummet you back to that painfully awkward age when hoarded tidbits of bogus sexual lore had the weight of magic passwords to the kingdom of heaven...The masterstroke of this small, heartfelt directorial debut (by Peter Care, from a screenplay by Jeff Stockwell) is its integration of animated sequences (by Todd McFarlane) in which action-adventure caricatures of the comic book characters parallel or comment on events in the boys' lives." --Stephen Holden, The New York Times

"The gentle comic treatment of adolescent sturm und drang should please fans of Chris Fuhrman's posthumously published cult novel...'The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys' is sweet but not saccharine." --J. Hoberman, The Village Voice

"The film belongs to a particular strain of American independent cinema in which the parts constitute far more than the whole; a project in which the director found his way in, but couldn't find his way out; where the several good moments hardly justify the film." --John Anderson, Newsday

" of the most inventive, funny and ultimately tragic coming-of-age movies in years....In very difficult roles, Kieran Culkin--the real actor of that family--and Hirsch are perfectly shaded and convincing, and Malone ('My Life as a House') is heartbreaking as a girl regretting her impatience to become a woman." --Jack Mathews, The New York Daily News

"Unfortunately titled for a film released in the middle of a scandal over pedophile priests, this contemplative coming-of-age tale transcends that initial 'oops' factor to reveal itself as a quietly comic little gem...uniformly terrific performances--especially from the limpid-eyed Culkin--and quote-worthy lines like, 'Let's get Peg Leg--I feel like kicking her nasty habit.'" --Megan Turner, The New York Post

"...compelling but flawed adaptation of Chris Fuhrman's novel about a parochial school prank that takes a turn for the tragic...Among the virtues of 'Altar Boys' are the solid contributions of Hirsch, Culkin, Malone and especially Jodie Foster, who miraculously conveys a touching fragility beneath her steely facade. If director Care is guilty of a mortal sin, it's not giving Foster more screen time." --Guy Flatley, Moviecrazed