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Layer Cake (2004)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  3 June 2005 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 125,527 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 257 user | 145 critic | 30 from

A successful cocaine dealer gets two tough assignments from his boss on the eve of his planned early retirement.



(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brinley Green ...
Paul the Boatman
Dimitri Andreas ...
Garry Tubbs ...
Charlie (as Natalie Lunghi)


A successful cocaine dealer, who has earned a respected place among England's Mafia elite, plans an early retirement from the business. However, big boss Jimmy Price hands down a tough assignment: find Charlotte Ryder, the missing rich princess daughter of Jimmy's old pal Edward, a powerful construction business player and gossip papers socialite. Complicating matters are two million pounds' worth of Grade A ecstasy, a brutal neo-Nazi sect and a whole series of double crossings. The title "LAYER CAKE" refers to the layers or levels anyone in business goes through in rising to the top. What is revealed is a modern underworld where the rules have changed. There are no 'codes', or 'families' and respect lasts as long as a line. Not knowing who he can trust, he has to use all his 'savvy', 'telling' and skills which make him one of the best, to escape his own. The ultimate last job, a love interest called Tammy, and an international drug ring threaten to draw him back into the 'cake mix'. ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

drugs | cocaine | pills | serbian | cake | See All (306) »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong brutal violence, sexuality, nudity, pervasive language and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

3 June 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L4yer Cake  »

Box Office


£4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,090,561 (UK) (1 October 2004)


$2,338,695 (USA) (12 August 2005)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| (US prints)|


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The word "fuck" and its derivatives are said 210 times throughout the film. See more »


The white safety wire attached to XXXX can be seen when the camera pulls up after he is dangled over the edge of the building by Eddie Temple's thugs. See more »


[first lines]
XXXX: When I was born, the world was a far simpler place. It was all just cops and robbers.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film lacks a traditional opening title. The title Layer Cake appears ten minutes into the film on a door that XXXX walks through. See more »


Ordinary World
Written by Simon Le Bon, John Taylor, Warren Cuccurullo and Nick Rhodes
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd
Performed by Duran Duran
Licensed courtesy of EMI Records Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Tiramisu, or ecstasy?
18 June 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

"Layer Cake" the stylish neo noir film by Matthew Vaughn, making his directorial debut, shows a man with enormous potential to do much better in future projects. The film, based on J.J. Connelly's novel, is a study about the drug business by some ruthless people that are making a lot of money with their illegal commerce.

Point in case, the nameless hero of the story who figures he has played the game right and now is about to make an exit from the business. Little does he know that his friend Jimmy Price has other ideas for him to execute, no doubt driven by a desire to get him in trouble, as proves to be the case.

"Layer Cake" screams for a second viewing. In fact, it is probably a requirement because it will make things clearer to the viewer who might get lost in this story with so many twists and turns.

Daniel Craig is the best thing going in the movie. In fact, he kept reminding us of a young Steve McQueen because of his cool demeanor and how he seems to move effortlessly throughout the film. Kenneth Cranham, as Jimmy Price, is also another actor whose contribution is an asset in the film. Michael Gambon, leaner and tanner, is a cool drug lord who rules a vast empire. Colm Meaney also is excellent, as well as the extensive cast.

Look for the next film by Matthew Vaughn!

71 of 97 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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