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Layer Cake (2004)

 -  Crime | Drama | Thriller  -  1 October 2004 (UK)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 107,979 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 247 user | 147 critic | 30 from Metacritic.com

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

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: Layer Cake (2004)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Slasher
...
Gazza
Brinley Green ...
Nobby
...
...
Terry
...
...
Slavo
...
Paul the Boatman
Dimitri Andreas ...
Angelo
...
Garry Tubbs ...
Brian
...
Charlie (as Natalie Lunghi)
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Storyline

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 | gangster | cake | See more »

Genres:

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:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

1 October 2004 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

L4yer Cake  »

Box Office

Budget:

£4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$143,237 (Australia) (29 July 2005)

Gross:

$2,338,695 (USA) (12 August 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (US prints)|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was Daniel Craig's performance in this film that caused Barbara Broccoli to take notice and think Craig might be a good fit for James Bond. See more »

Goofs

When XXXX is alone in his apartment, drinking whiskey with ground aspirin, the face of a crew member appears briefly on a mirror just beyond the actor. See more »

Quotes

[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 »

Connections

Referenced in Top Gear: Episode #8.5 (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood
Written by Bennie Benjamin, Gloria Caldwell and Sol Marcus
(c) 1965 Bennie Benjamin Music, Inc and Chris-n-Jen Music
Used by kind permission of Carlin Music Corp and Chris-n-Jen Music
Performed by Joe Cocker
Licensed courtesy of EMI Records Ltd and Sony Music Entertainment (UK) Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
In short, see this film.
7 October 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

After being cast as Bond, Daniel Craig's back catalogue is now much sought after. Although Craig came to most of the UK's attention with a stand out performance in Our Friends in the North, it's Layer Cake that showcases why he got the Bond audition. Perhaps now, this strong contender for the best thriller of the year may find the audience it deserves. Mis-sold as a more art house friendly addition to the Guy Ritchie school of crime films, Layer Cake is a unique and remarkable experience.

The plot is deceivingly simple and would wrongly be placed in the gangster-wanting-to-retire-peacefully cinema staple seen frequently in Al Pacino movies. It is a much greater accomplishment that the audacious visual style, superb script and excellent performances make easy comparisons to this film pretty difficult. If anything it is closer to Schrader's 'American Gigalo' where the morally questionable hero is engulfed in a situation going on around him. The predominantly male cast is faultless with everyone from Dexter Fletcher to Michael Gambon putting in superb turns to give the characters justice. Far more human than the cartoon stereotypes we've come to expect after so very many Brit gangster flicks. Craig has never looked in better shape for taking on Hollywood.

Hats off then to Matthew Vaugn for filming Britain as it can look. Grimy in places but every bit astonishing in locations as our Stateside cousins. We've grown too used to seeing rain pouring and hackneyed clichés that have represented this country on celluloid. It's not foppish. It's not Bend It Like Beckham. So there really is no excuse left not to see it (aside from the awful trailer). Layer Cake deserves a wide audience and there's more than enough of everything for everyone to enjoy. At times hilarious, astonishingly frank and incredibly concise the whole film is a pure joy and clearly made for people that love film. Makes you wonder why they can't all be as classy as this.


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