GLASS JAW brings redemption ringside with grit, realism and drama to spare.
Now available on VOD and Amazon Prime!
Nick R. Murphy
The boxing film has long been a source of compelling and immersive stories. GLASS JAW offers a modern spin on the classic tale of an underdog overcoming the odds in the name of glory and personal salvation.
GLASS JAW stars Lee Kholafai as Travis Austin, a rough and tumble kid who goes from being a ward of the state to becoming a championship boxer on top of his game. He wins the big title and he gets the girl, but that's only the beginning. After a post-fight party takes a dark turn, a teenage girl is dead and Travis is sent to prison in connection with her accidental overdose. Inside, Travis must get in touch with his primal survival instincts and defend himself against fellow inmates that challenge his fighting ability. A few years later, Travis is released and must adjust to life on the outside after losing everything he gained as a champ. Travis starts again from the bottom up, and trains to reclaim his dignity and his title. However, the journey back to the top is rife with struggle, forcing Travis to do whatever it takes to make it happen. In doing so, he is forced to face a past he would rather forget and let go of the dream life he left behind.
Carried by a stunning performance from Kholafai, GLASS JAW also boasts an incredible supporting cast. Brandon Sklenar (Vice) co-stars as Joe, an up and coming fighter and one of Travis's best friends, who becomes a personal and professional rival after Travis serves his time. Reynaldo Gallegos (Logan) plays Eddy, Joe's trainer who shares a tragic history with Travis. Korrina Rico plays Dana, the love of Travis's life who struggles to cope with Travis's absence once he's put behind bars. Other cast members include: Jaime Camil (Jane the Virgin), Malcolm David Kelly (Lost), Vernon Wells (Commando) and hip hop artist Boosie Badazz aka Lil' Boosie in his feature film debut.
Two other standouts in the GLASS JAW ensemble are John Gries (Napoleon Dynamite, Get Shorty, Men In Black) and Mark Rolston (The Departed, The Shawshank Redemption, Aliens). Gries is the tortured center of the film as Travis Austin's gambling alcoholic of a father, and Rolston is the redemptive heart of the piece as the grizzled trainer who takes Travis under his wing in good faith after Travis is released from the pen.
Travis Austin's road to redemption parallels Lee Kholafai's own journey of bringing GLASS JAW to the screen. Along with playing Austin, Kholafai is also credited as co-writer and producer. Kholafai's responsibilities as producer were numerous, and each had their own set of challenges. Concerns over budgeting, securing locations, safety, and making sure everyone got along, were paramount to creating a successful product. Kholafai used the stress of his producing duties to fuel his intense performance as Austin, making it come across masterfully in the film. He prepared himself for the boxing sequences by training at City of Angels Boxing in Downtown LA with the owner, Alex Brenes. These efforts not only helped Kholafai look the part, but feel the part as well. They shot all the fighting sequences in a three day period with daunting preparation and impeccable choreography that unfolds beautifully in the scenes it's featured in.
Also in the producer's chair is the legendary Steve Perry, who's been credited on equally legendary films such as: Die Hard 2, True Romance, The Last Boy Scout, Lethal Weapon 2 & 3. He was also the executive producer of Executive Decision and Lethal Weapon 4. Not to be outdone, another Hollywood heavyweight offers their skills behind the camera as well. Director of photography, Jeffery L. Kimball, brings his talents to the forefront as the cinematographer of GLASS JAW, lending the same level of craft that he brought to his earlier efforts like: Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop 2, Jacob's Ladder, True Romance, and Mission: Impossible II. Kimball's surefooted lensing gives GLASS JAW a glossy sheen that rivals the looks of the most high dollar blockbusters Hollywood has to offer.
GLASS JAW was directed by Jeff Celentano, a filmmaking veteran who has spent over two decades bringing intense thrillers to the screen. Past efforts include 1998's Gunshy (starring William Peterson and Diane Lane), 2000's Primary Suspect (starring William Baldwin and Lee Majors), 2004's Moscow Heat (with Michael York and Richard Tyson), and 2009's Breaking Point (with Tom Berenger, Armand Assante and Busta Rhymes). With GLASS JAW, Celentano continues his tradition of telling stories about hardened individuals facing unendurable obstacles. And with a rich history in filmmaking behind him, Celentano brings GLASS JAW the depth and humanity the story calls for.
Sharry Flaherty of Samera Entertainment acquired GLASS JAW for Vision Films, who distributed the picture and released it into theaters on October 26, 2018, the same date of its VOD premiere. It was soon followed by a DVD release in December. It is now available for rent or purchase on multiple streaming platforms including: Apple, Vudu, and YouTube. And you can stream it free via an Amazon Prime membership.
GLASS JAW is an emotional juggernaut of a drama that will make you believe in rising above adversity. Check it out today!