Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.
United Kingdom/Spain, 2000. Recorded Picture Company, FilmFour, Chronopolis Films, Kanzaman, Sexy RPC. Screenplay by Louis Mellis, David Scinto. Cinematography by Ivan Bird. Produced by Jeremy Thomas. Music by Roque Baños. Production Design by Jan Houllevigue. Costume Design by Louise Stjernsward. Film Editing by John Scott, Sam Sneade.
In this colourful gangster film, a retired British safecracker (Ray Winstone) has moved to Spain with his girlfriend and is enjoying his life free from the pressures of organized crime. An old acquaintance (Ben Kingsley) shows up and convinces him (or forces him, depending on how you see it) into one last score, breaking into a valuable vault in London. Winstone resists getting back into his old life as much as possible, but Kingsley’s vehemence soon turns to threats which soon turn to some very scary violence. The story leaves a lot to be desired, another copycat mob film in the wake of Guy Ritchie’s Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, but it is distinguished by energetic direction and colourful cinematography. What really makes it pulse, though, is the awe-inspiring performance by Kingsley, a terrifying bulldog character coming from an actor more famous for playing staid, intellectual men like Gandhi and Meyer Lansky. Here he pretty much tears the screen in two, and watching him is as much a delight as it is a total fright
Academy Award Nomination: Best Supporting Actor (Ben Kingsley)
European Film Award: Best European Actor (Ben Kingsley)
Golden Globe Award Nomination: Best Supporting Actor (Ben Kingsley)
Screen Actors Guild Award Nomination: Best Supporting Actor (Ben Kingsley)
Toronto International Film Festival: 2000