I have had mixed emotions ever since I read an article in GQ saying they were making the series. The original film was a masterpiece, followed up by the even more perfect director's cut, which added even more plot to the original. When Four Stolen Hooves was shown on TV, I did miss it by accident, and cursed myself until I saw the first one hour episode of the series. Three minutes was all I watched. I was glad that the dialogue wasn't turned down, by the villain was a white parody of Ali G and it didn't bode well. However, Four Stolen Hooves came out on video 2 weeks later, and the Lock Stock fan I am couldn't stop me from buying it and I watched it straight away.
I can say that I am pleased that something inside me gave this another chance, as I was quite impressed. Although it can never come close to being as good as the original, for a TV movie it is very acceptable; especially as it had exactly the same budget of around one and a half million pounds that the original had.
The plot has the same characteristics that the original had, that it sounds incredibly zaney but if you know London then you know it is also very possible too. The elements of Sherbert the horse, the custom made erotic time piece and the "Animal classics" pornography are the basis of which the lads get into trouble with this installment; a nice equal of a wad of cash, a ton of weed and two muskets that are so loved from 2 Smoking Barrels.
The characters are interesting in most ways, but some try so hard to be equals of original characters. For instance, Firebug is a nice new twist of a psychopathic crimelord, given pyromanic tendancies to make him different from Rory Breaker. But, Ralph Brown's character of Miami Vice (The name needs to go if anything) is an obvious and direct copy of Hatchet Harry, and as good as Ralph Brown is, he doesn't quite come totally across as believable. The large factions of characters are still kept in (You wonder how you can actually connect four pub owners, two crime lords, two Norweigan stoners, a Greek kebab king and an unruly mob of carnies) and they help to approach the plot from every angle before merging their involvements for a final climax.
In my opinion, this is a good television equivalent worthy of attention from the fans of the original film, but as much as it keeps the look, the characters and situations of 2 Smoking Barrels, it can never be accepted as an equal, just a damn good TV adaption.
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