Diamond Ruff (Fredro Starr) is a story of an orphaned kid (caused by a hit man) who drives himself to youthful respect, successful but not legal money and power then using his intelligence and skill falls but eventually learns the true values in life.
He rises from that difficult beginning to lead a wealthy if not legal empire filled with cash and willing women. But that leads him to a level of confidence that brings him down.
Later with the help of Reverend Trek Woods (Dennis L. A. White) he begins to discover redemption along with an avenue to prove he is innocent of the crime he has been incarcerated for.
Director, Alec Asten straddles two worlds: one of corruption, violence and self aggrandizement to one of understanding how to survive the battle of life.
He doesn't hit us over the head with the early action and the other dark side of the law at the same time the redemption is not sudden quick and simple. It takes time, understanding and patience. Fredro Starr, as Diamond Ruff carries off the change smoothly and believably.
Too often a redemption film is filled with preaching and feels more like a Sunday morning sermon in church. Asten using Joe Young's words takes a more real tact. He shows us it's not easy to change but it can be done.
There are also interesting note of challenges that touch on some of the actions at work in American streets today, but Asten doesn't attempt to squeeze out emotion for his lead character or anyone else. He simply follows a life that is interesting from childhood to adulthood as it forges a path over the bumps. The unfair treatment and maturity Ruff emerges with is an interesting journey which has its climax at the end of the film.
This is not a perfect film, but it is enjoyable, holds our attention and demands admiration as a first film.