Concrete Cowboy

Director: Ricky Staub
Year Released: 2020
Rating: 1.0

A ticked off single mother drives her misbehaving son Cole (Caleb McLaughlin) from the Motor City to Philly to live with his biological father Harp (Idris Elba), whose main obsession in life is tending to horses - while in the City of Brotherly Love, Cole reconnects with small-time drug dealer Smush (Jharrel Jerome), who leads him in the wrong direction.  It's painfully clear where it's going from the beginning and doesn't dare to draw outside the lines: Cole has to choose between a life of crime or an almost Zen-like devotion to the equines, so he spends equal time in both worlds, with Smush simply there as the movie's sacrificial lamb (when he starts talking about their future together, you know he's a goner).  It never bothers to delve into its lead's psyche to really know what's setting him off (his parents' separation? anxiety about growing up?), but I doubt it cares when there are all those not-exactly-pretty horses to photograph trotting by the Rocky Statue.