“You know, someone once told me “you’re only as good as the people around you”. And you didn’t get to work on my door unless you could seriously handle yourself ” – Carlton Leach
Number of Times Seen – 1 (11 Feb 2020)
Brief Synopsis – Look at the Essex mob during the 1990’s from the perspective of one of the middlemen.
My Take on it – This is a film that I came across and knew absolutely nothing about it before sitting down to watch it.
I have never been familiar with the British underworld and hoped that this movie would help enlighten me to everything that happened back in the 90’s.
Unfortunately, the premise doesn’t work as well as one might think and that has much to do with the fact that things just don’t feel grounded enough.
The story and characters are all over the place and this erratic nature is harmful to trying to enjoy things even more.
This film seems to be a more modern version of Goodfellas (1990), but it’s stories and characters just aren’t as powerful or interesting enough to keep things entertaining for two hours.
Despite the fact that these characters are all based on real people, they come across here as seeming quite stereotypical and cartoonish the whole way through.
The lifestyles of these characters are quite chaotic and disruptive to a normal family life and they find a way to relay this to the audience quite succinctly throughout.
The cats of this film is also pretty good but the fact that none of them really are able to stand out among the others makes this feel more like a typical gangster film instead of something more poignant and powerful.
Bottom Line – Interesting premise that doesn’t work as well as one might hope due to the fact that it fails to stay grounded and ends up all over the place. This is a mediocre Goodfellas (1990) that fails to be as powerful even if it’s entertaining. The characters are all based on real people yet things seem a bit too much like caricatures and stereotypes throughout. The film tries to show how chaotic and disruptive this kind of lifestyle can be and that they manage to definitely relay to the audience without a problem. The cast is good, but none of them clearly stick out among the others because there are too many over the top performances here.
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – A depiction of the Rettendon murders which took place in 1995. The same murders were depicted in Bonded by Blood (2010), The Fall of the Essex Boys (2013) and Essex Boys (2000). (From IMDB)
Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)
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