Cert: 15 / 94 mins / Dir. Richard Shepard
Now here's an odd beast. It feels like it sits somewhere between The Bank Job and Bronson, with the grimy, untrustworthy London of the former populated by the cartoonish wideboys of the latter. Jude Law gives a magnificent performance as the eponymous safe-cracker, steering the role carefully between likeable rogue and self-obsessed scumbag, making sure he lands squarely on neither. The comedic moments he shares with Richard E Grant's Dickie are among the film's finest and most confident (Grant is also marvellous, if completely underused after the first act).
The film is split into chapters, clearly marked with a title-card between each, and once the thread with European crime-lord Mr Fontain (a delightfully barking Demian Bichir) comes to its end, so does the story's coherence. Everything after 'the crash' feels like it's freewheeling; earnestly played, but ultimately aimless (much like Hemingway's character, to be fair). As each segment ends, it feels slightly incomplete, and you know the final reel is going to have to pull something pretty special out of the bag to cap things off neatly. And ultimately, it doesn't.
But for all my over-analysing, it's still a very enjoyable movie when it's working, and I foresee it being a regular Saturay-nighter in years to come. Add beer and friends for best results.
Dom Hemingway is full of great performances looking for a strong screenplay to inhabit. The core idea is there, and so's all the talent to make it happen. It just feels like an outline of what a cracking Brit-flick should be…
In the opening act, yes; but less as it went on.
I'm not sure. I don't think so.
It's good, but the DVD should do you.
The film felt (to me) like it was missing the archetypal London kingpin (Gambon in Layer Cake, Moriarty in Lock, Stock); who would you cast in this to complement Jude Law and Richard E Grant, without upstaging them?
• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
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