THE SCRAPPER (2021) Reviews of gritty crime thriller

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The Scrapper is a 2021 American crime thriller about an ex-con who is drawn back into the underworld and must deal with two criminal gangs.

Written, directed by and starring Bari Kang. Produced by Stevan Lee Mraovitch

The movie stars Craig muMs Grant (No Sudden Move), Ava Paloma (Deadlock), Gugun Deep Singh, Samrat Chakrabarti, Anil Kumar, Allison Thomas Lee, Ankur Bhatia, Frank Rodriguez and Andhy Mendez.


Queens, New York City. A criminal playing-field of modern immigrant syndicates: human-trafficking, money-laundering and unflinching brutality.

Uncomfortable in his Punjabi-Mexican skin, ex-con turned ‘scrapper’ Jake (Bari Kang) carries the weight of both his family legacy and a violent past. Caring for a mentally-challenged brother and an unborn child on the way, he is focused on turning his life around.

When one last job presents a way out for good, he must decide between loyalty to blood ties or to his newfound family. His past soon catches up with him and he’s thrown into the middle of a conflict between Punjabi and Mexican factions led by violent, ruthless criminals.


As events explode into brutal violence, with everyone he loves at stake, he may need to go to his own darkest places to finally escape…


” …it doesn’t seem to have much to say on its own. Kang does a good job and has certainly written and directed a movie that takes characters that most audiences may not consider for this kind of film. Unfortunately, once the audience may start to realise what they’ve seen before, there are little surprises.” Battle Royale with Cheese

“Kang’s sophomore effort is imperfect, with confusing villains and an underground world that needs to be fleshed out more. However, The Scrapper achieves its goal of understanding what drives a decent man to violence thanks to strong writing and good performances.” Film Threat

“Production-wise, Kang and his crew craft a film that looks great and conveys a real vision, even if its budget is sometimes visible. Sure, there are sequences of the same men chatting in the same room perhaps far too often […] What matters is that it’s a convincing film with a compelling, well-portrayed protagonist, good action and a thoughtfully downbeat conclusion.” Midwest Film Journal

“Director Bari Kang’s sophomore effort, following the commendable low-budget crime thriller Lucky in 2017, is an equally engrossing grassroots thriller that proves both a showcase for the Queens-bred filmmaker and actor as well as a reminder as to what can be accomplished on a Reservoir Dogs-sized budget.” Moviehole

“Overall, The Scrapper brings some solid moments during its runtime, it just doesn’t always stick the landing. For fans of shows like The Sopranos, there will be a lot to like, but without stronger characters, the highs just can’t be matched here.” To Tony Productions

” …the dialogue is well written, and The Scrapper’s setting gives the situation a bit of novelty that helps disguise the fact we’ve seen it so many times before. Surprisingly, the heist itself doesn’t get major screen time and the way things unravel is different […] The Scrapper is a satisfyingly grim and rather bleak thriller about crime and poverty, revenge and family. And a reminder that some things are the same, no matter what culture you come from.” Voices from the Balcony

“Kang’s latest feature is a rewarding and convincing portrait of the frantic lengths one man will undergo to protect his loved ones. Though it may not prove entirely memorable, the presentation is realistic, ambitious, entertaining, and elevated by welcome touches of social commentary. It’s a rough, yet commendable, celluloid journey that is worth pursuing…” Without Your Head

Filmmaker’s statement:

“I’ve always been fascinated by the darker side of human nature and drawn to the films of Scorsese, De Palma, Tarantino, and Melville. The underdog, outcast and anti-hero are who captivate me. This is what inspired me to write The Scrapper, a crime thriller with an ethnic twist, set in a world of Punjabi-Mexican criminals. Inspired by my personal experience as an illegal Punjabi immigrant youth in Queens, New York”, says writer/director Bari Kang.

He continues: “The film has a dark gritty tone elevated by a fully ethnic cast and authentic locations. Amidst the outbursts of brutal violence are beautiful contemplative moments of vulnerability and love. On the surface, The Scrapper, is a crime thriller genre film but at its core, it’s about family, loyalty and change.”

Release date:

In the US, The Scrapper will be available to purchase or rent on Digital on December 7th from 1091 Pictures.

Cast and characters:

Craig Mums Grant … Leon
Myles Clohessy … Punk
Ava Paloma … Kitt
Samrat Chakrabarti … Raj
Allison Thomas Lee … Linda
Anil Kumar … Teji
Frank Rodriguez … Oscar
Phae Amara … Shel
Gugun Deep Singh … JB
Rob Giumarra … Oscar Heavy #1
Randall Marquez … Oscar Heavy #2
Laurie Dawn … Dr Wolf
Andhy Méndez … Frankie
Paul Pilcz … Punk #3
Nixon Cesar … Cleaner
Daniel Danca … Punk #2
Ankur Bhatia … Veer
Nayab Hussain … Teji’s Wife
Bari Kang … Jake
Stephen Shore … Punk #4
Gus Scharr … Frankie Heavy


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