This heartwarming coming-of-age tale is set on a single summer day in 1933 in South Philadelphia.
Gennaro (Jerry Barone) is a restless 12 year old who lives with his poor and widowed mother (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio) and his grandfather (Al Pacino). From his chair in the backyard under a tree, the old man declares he will probably die today. Gennaro doesn't believe him. He's determined to raise 25 cents so he can attend the opening of a spectacular new movie theater in the neighborhood. When Gennaro comes up short after doing a few odd jobs and even singing on the streets, his grandfather sends him on a mission to ask a woman he wronged years ago for forgiveness.
Director James Foley mines the bittersweet moments out of Joseph Stefano's fine screenplay. By the end of the day, Gennaro has come face-to-face with death, sexuality, love, loss, and forgiveness. His grandfather's final bit of wisdom to him is, "The belly needs, the heart wants."