4 items from 2017
There’s a lot of energy swirling around this flawed, but punchy and watchable gangland thriller from Irish film-maker Mark O’Connor, who directed the bareknuckle fight drama King of the Travellers in 2012.
This too stars John Connors, who is also co-writer. He plays Jason, a tough guy and occasional DJ in north Dublin. He hangs out with his crew, some of them are rappers, all are on the dole but dreaming of vaguely making it in the music business. In the meantime, the plan is get some startup cash by robbing an off-licence in order to buy some heroin from a local wholesaler, to retail on the streets – to the very considerable displeasure of the area’s chief drug dealer, with whose wife »
- Peter Bradshaw
Cardboard Gangsters, 2017.
Directed by Mark O’Connor.
Four childhood friends have grown up in the Darndale part of Dublin and are now determined to take control of the drug trade from the local crime lord. It means money, power, women and everything they want. But it comes at a price.
As the local Mr Big yells after them, they’re nothing but cardboard gangsters – four young men who’ve hung around together since childhood and who are now trying to challenge the established underworld order.
Not that they see it that way. The lads in Cardboard Gangsters have been brought up in Darndale in Dublin, where a helicopter hovering overhead is an everyday occurrence, where no take away service will deliver and where the houses are identically faceless and grey. They want the money, the bling, »
- Freda Cooper
100 Streets, 2016.
Directed by John O’Hanlon
Set against the streets of Chelsea, three separate stories of people facing personal crises overlap: a former rugby star whose marriage is crumbling before his eyes, a cab driver whose life is devastated by an accident and a young man trying to escape a life of crime on a local estate.
For a while last year, it seemed that Idris Elba could do no wrong – The Jungle Book, Star Trek Beyond – and his involvement in 100 Streets as both producer and actor predictably boosted expectations. Except that this was a film made back in 2014 which only made it into cinemas last autumn. Now out on DVD, the reasons why it received a lukewarm welcome in UK cinemas are all too apparent.
The streets of the title are in Chelsea where »
- Freda Cooper
100 Streets tells three different interlocking stories that take place in the same London neighborhood. Two of those stories fuse pretty well while the other is fine on its own but really doesn’t connect at all and feels out of place. All is rendered inconsequential, however, in a doozy of a last twenty minutes. Each story culminates in a barrage of conveniently laid occurrences leading to overly melodramatic outcomes for all characters that will have you throwing your hands up in the air and possibly even letting out a giggle.
The first story deals with Kingsley (Franz Drameh), a bright young man from a broken home that’s mixed up in street crime. Not unlike Drameh’s character Firestorm on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Kingsley spits fire as well. Or rather, he likes to write and recite poetry. While performing community service at the local cemetery for his most recent arrest, »
- Joseph Hernandez
4 items from 2017
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