12 O’clock Boys is one of those documentaries that you really hope is one thing, but turns out to be a little bit light on that front, and ends up just being a solid and interesting film. You see it follows a young kid, Pug, who over the course of 3 years tries to get into his local bike gang that his formed in his city. A gang of over a hundred late teens to 20 something’s, who terrorise their community on their dirt bikes, which they race through the city at high speeds.
I say terrorise even though I know it’s not as simple as that, as I can see where these kids are coming from, as they grow up in an environment where there isn’t much to do, and little to no opportunities to escape, so such things must be very attractive to help alleviate the boredom. But the older part of me sees that what they are doing is both highly dangerous for themselves, for other people on the streets, and really just causes more antagonism with the authorities. So yeah, terrorise seems like a good word.
The filmmaking was a little off the cuff, and maybe not as structured as it could have been, and the subject of the film, Pug, and his family and friends, though interesting, aren’t really engaging enough to keep you rooted to the story and what’s happening. I did enjoy the film, but I was left a little unsatisfied, and I’d rather this have kept going with a couple more years of filming before releasing it, as it felt like Pug was on the verge of really diverting down a course that would have made the film that much more interesting. But hey, there’s always a sequel I guess!
7.5 out of 10 from me!