If you haven’t seen the 2011 film Attack the Block, stop what you’re doing right now – quit your job, walk out of your classroom, whatever it takes – and rectify that scenario immediately. I’m exaggerating about the lengths you should go to in order to see this movie, but not by much: it was my favorite movie of the year when it was released, and it’s one of the most energetic, exciting, and crisply made movies of the past decade. Writer/director Joe Cornish’s directorial debut is impressive in dozens of ways, but mainly because of the way it introduces you to a group of hoodlums and portrays them as villains, only to complete reverse the audience’s feelings about them as the film goes on. It’s a brilliant bit of organic storytelling wrapped in an alien invasion plot, and it works in large part thanks to actor John Boyega, who plays Moses, the charismatic leader of the gang.
Boyega hasn’t exactly lit up the film scene since his debut performance in Attack the Block, but anyone who’s seen the film has undoubtedly been pulling for him to break out in a big way. He’s been in a few small films here and there, and just the other day, he scored the lead role of runner Jesse Owens in a biopic called Race about the Olympic athlete’s life. But even that may have relatively small appeal considering a competing Disney biopic of Owens is also on the way, so Boyega’s still hanging out in the “indie breakout” realm of Hollywood. But his newest project just might bump up the industry’s awareness of him.
Variety reports that Boyega has joined the cast of the event series “24: Live Another Day,” which sees Kiefer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer character returning to action in London in order to foil a terrorist plot four years after we last saw him on the groundbreaking action television series “24.” We’re not sure what role Boyega will play, but how awesome would it be if he reprised his role as Moses and helped Bauer fend off an alien invasion? That seems like the only thing that would even pose a real challenge to Bauer anymore, considering he’s faced Chinese torture, presidential assassination attempts by the handful, double crosses, and a freaking nuclear attack in his time as a CTU agent.
Kidding aside, Boyega has a ton of talent and some great British swagger, so it should be fun to see how he plays into the larger events of “24: Live Another Day” in his recurring role. Hopefully Hollywood takes notice of his performance and someone gives him the shot to break out like fans of Attack the Block know he can. Boyega joins a cast that includes Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Kim Raver, Yvonne Strahovski, and more, and “24: Live Another Day” begins on Monday, May 5th on Fox.
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