CHARM CITY KINGS*CUT TO THE CHASE*
NOTE: This spoiler was submitted by Jeremy
The film starts in Baltimore with 14-year-old Mouse (Jahi Di’Allo Winston) watching a video of his late older brother Stro (Tyquan Ford). Since he was a child, Mouse was fascinated with riding dirt bikes because of Stro. He goes to get his own bike from a friend, but moments after he hits the road, Mouse is stopped by police. He is picked up by Detective Rivers (Will Catlett), who frequently looks out for Mouse, even though the boy doesn’t like to be seen with him. He is especially embarrassed when Rivers drives him home and his friends can see him.
Mouse lives with his mother Teri (Teyonah Parris) and little sister Shay (Milan Ray). Teri is harsh toward Mouse, but it is to avoid him having a similar fate to Stro. He is also aspiring to be a vet, and he frequently volunteers at the animal shelter. Mouse also rides bikes with his best friends Lamont (Donielle Tremaine Hansley) and Sweartagawd (Kezii Curtis). They go to Mouse’s house to get him to join them in meeting a new girl who is staying with her grandmother, Nicki (Chandler DuPont). The boys ride their bikes to introduce themselves, and while she finds them to be rather foolish, she does find Mouse endearing. The boys are then sent away by Nicki’s grandmother.
Every Sunday in the summer has an event known as The Ride, where other dirt bike riders gather to ride across the streets. Mouse and his friends bring their bikes there, hoping to get the attention of the infamous street bike crew, Midnight Clique, and their leader MNC Blax (Meek Mill). Mouse attempts to show off on his bike, only to face plant on the concrete. Nicki also happens to be there taking pictures. Mouse tells her about the culture of bike-riding and his fascination with the Clique. The event is then broken up by the police. One of the Clique throws a brick at a cop car, leading to them pursuing the gang until they are given orders to stand down, allowing the gang to escape.
Later that night, the boys ride to find the Clique. They are confronted by members Queen (Lakeyria Doughty) and Jamal (Pacino Braxton), who dismiss them as just kids. When Mouse tries to turn his bike on, it doesn’t work. After Lamont and Sweartagawd leave, Mouse is approached by Blax, who offers to help with the bike since he works in a garage for his parole. He recognizes Mouse as Stro’s younger brother, as Blax knew him and used to ride with him, and Stro would always talk about Mouse. Blax offers Mouse a chance to help work in the garage (without pay), and Mouse agrees but also asks if he can get Lamont and Sweartagawd in on it.
The boys go to work in the garage the next day, but Lamont and Sweartagawd don’t like working for free when they could be enjoying their summer. Mouse then goes over to see Nicki again. He learns about her home life with her mom not being great, while she learns that his real name is Myron, and “Mouse” was a nickname that came after he managed to catch a mouse in the house. Mouse tells Nicki he will make the most of her time there, especially since she doesn’t have a phone.
Mouse spends more time with Blax, who eventually allows him to ride a rebuilt bike as a delivery across town. He picks up Nicki and goes for a ride. As they stop somewhere, Mouse is approached by a young man named Derrick (Marvin Raheem), who used to know Stro. He asks Mouse if he can take a quick ride down the block. Mouse relents and does so, but Derrick leaves him stranded there. Mouse panics and goes to Lamont and Sweartagawd, who already knew Derrick as someone with a reputation for stealing bikes and then breaking them down to sell parts. The three go to Derrick’s garage to try and get the bike back, but he says it’s gone. He even orders them at gunpoint to leave until the Clique arrives. Derrick becomes fearful when Blax approaches him, but instead of retaliating, Blax simply warns Derrick against doing it again. Unsatisfied, Lamont grabs a brick and hits Derrick with it before pummeling him to near death until the others stop him. Jamal then delivers the blow to knock Derrick out cold.
Blax expresses disappointment to Mouse in how he handled himself with Derrick. When Mouse tries to ask for work in running with the Clique to make extra money that he needs to help out at home, Blax refuses, and Mouse quits the garage. Back home, Teri also scolds Mouse for not being at the vet anymore, worrying that he is getting into trouble. Rivers also starts following Mouse to make sure he doesn’t hurt himself, but Mouse crudely tells him off in an attempt to get away from Rivers.
The boys decide to approach Jamal about running jobs for them. They take the boys on, allowing them to earn some extra cash. When Nicki approaches Mouse to take pictures, he brushes her off and rides away with another girl. Teri later finds Mouse’s hidden money stash and she berates him, asking if he wants to end up like Stro. Teri ends up kicking him out of the house, and Mouse goes to stay with Sweartagawd. Meanwhile, Rivers goes to the garage to speak to Blax. He knows that he had involvement in whatever happened to Stro, but Blax believes Rivers doesn’t care about the other black boys on the street since he has put many of them away in prison.
Mouse goes to the garage again and finds that Blax’s dog Sophie isn’t feeling well. They take her to the vet and find that she has a gastric dilation. The vet says that they could operate on her, but Sophie may not survive due to her age. Mouse makes the hard decision to help put Sophie down. After the procedure, Blax comes clean to Mouse over what happened to Stro. He sent Stro out on a run, wherein Stro got killed while riding. Blax has lived with the guilt ever since and thought that taking Mouse under his wing would make him feel like he was doing the right thing. Mouse leaves Blax by himself.
The boys go to Jamal for another job. They go to rob a convenience store that they usually go to, thinking the owners won’t retaliate. They are proven wrong when the owner’s wife brings out a rifle. After Lamont fires a shot, the woman begins to fire at them, killing Sweartagawd. Mouse and Lamont escape and split up. Mouse goes to Blax’s garage to tell him what happened. The police, led by Rivers, arrive at the garage after learning of the incident. Blax ends up taking the blame for everything so that Mouse will not go to jail. Even though he knows the truth, Rivers takes Blax in despite Mouse’s protests. Teri watches the news report of the robbery and hears that a boy was killed. She starts to call Mouse’s phone until he walks into the door. He and Teri tearfully hug each other.
One year later, Mouse is working for the vet. He keeps in touch with Nicki after apologizing for his behavior, and she agrees to see him again soon. Mouse runs into Lamont after a long departure. They appear to be on friendly terms, despite being more distant now, and they are still mourning Sweartagawd’s death. After they part ways again, Mouse returns to Teri and Shay with groceries.
On the streets of Baltimore, a dirt bike gang known as Midnight Clique is infamous among the police and the community. 14-year-old Mouse wants to join ever since his late older brother Stro showed him how to ride. He gets the attention of the Clique's leader, MNC Blax, who knew Stro. He allows Mouse to start helping out at his garage to work on the bikes.
Mouse gets his friends Lamont and Sweartagawd in on the work, but when they want to make money, they start running drugs for the Clique, against Blax's wishes since he felt responsible for Stro's death after sending him out on a run. The boys go on a run to rob a convenience store, but it ends tragically when Sweartagawd is shot and killed by the store owner's wife. Blax takes the fall for the robbery to spare Mouse the jail time, and allows him to return home to his mother.
One year later, Mouse works for the vet and is helping his family more.