(out of 5)
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.
Directed by Jonathan Glazer
Cinematography by Ivan Bird
Produced by Jeremy Thomas
Music by Roque Baños
Production Design by Jan Houllevigue
Costume Design by Louise Stjernsward