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hells kitchen - Neal Stearns Hells Kitchen Church vs the...

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Neal Stearns 11/30/06 Hells Kitchen: Church vs. the Mob Barry Levinson ’s Sleepers largely takes place in the Hell’s Kitchen area of New York City. This neighborhood seems to be locked in a constant struggle between the church and the mob. The mob in the movie is represented by the aging mafia boss King Benny, while the church is represented by Father Bobby, who acts as a literal father figure to the four boys who are the main characters of the movie. Young people in Hell’s Kitchen are taught from a young age to respect both the church and the mob. In a neighborhood where most of the residents were poor Irish and Italian children of immigrants, the Catholic Church played a large role in their lives. While it is not tolerated for anyone within the neighborhood to commit a crime against anyone else in the neighborhood, it is common practice to keep quiet about known mobsters and their activities which commonly take place within the neighborhood. As “Shakes” says while
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