If you can get past the insufferable bunch of violent, worthless, ignorant, career criminal rednecks that Brandon Teena aspires to befriend in "Boys Don't Cry" -- a based-on-reality account of a young Nebraska transvestite's murder -- then this otherwise dramatic and devastating drama might just leave you speechless and emotionally wiped out.

By itself Hilary Swank's unfettered, unflinching performance as Brandon -- a 20-year-old from Lincoln who discards the female coil that never suited her to embrace the gallant swagger of the charming, delicately chiseled cowboy within -- is so convincingly masculine that if you walked in on the middle of the movie, you'd never know you were watching an actress.

This works out well, since "Boys Don't Cry" is the story of how Brandon moved 70 miles away to a wide spot in the road called Falls City and began a new life as the little buddy of felonious, hard-drinking hayseeds and an the town's most alluring, byronic, 120-pound hunk -- before being exposed as a cross-dresser and heinously raped and murdered by the repulsed rabble-rousers he called friends.

Continue reading: Boys Don't Cry Review