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Hell to Pay (2005)

Larry Malone sets up his brother Dave to get rid of Murphy, a rival gang leader, and then informs on Dave to have him convicted of murder. In one simple act of double-dealing he, ... See full summary »
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Johnny Murphy (as Terry Turbo)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Policeman
Nicholas Bateman ...
Police officer
...
Garry Bushell ...
One of larry's goons
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Mike-stripper (as John Cambell-Mac)
Pete Conway ...
Police man
Dave Courtney ...
Dave Malone
Sally Farmiloe ...
Mrs A
Ian Freeman ...
Cellmate
Joanne Guest ...
Police woman
...
Martin
Helen Keating ...
Helen
...
Big Vic
Francine Lewis ...
Gangsters wife
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Storyline

Larry Malone sets up his brother Dave to get rid of Murphy, a rival gang leader, and then informs on Dave to have him convicted of murder. In one simple act of double-dealing he, consequently, removes both his main rivals and clears the way for expansive future plans for his crime family. After a few months on remand, Dave is acquitted at the Old Bailey after producing a fake videotape showing him entering a club on the night of the murders. Suspicious of his brother, Dave starts to question some of Larry's activities: especially his use of guns and his movement into the more lucrative drug scene. Larry, meanwhile, picks up Johnny, Murphy's son, when he is released from prison and using Johnny's need to revenge his father's death, employs him to track down and kill Dave, hence aiming to give himself total control of their crime family. Dave employs Freddie, the son of one of the gang who's died 'in service', to drop £100,000 off in order to buy a painting by Ronnie Kray which is being... Written by Phil A. Ballard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime

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Details

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Release Date:

31 October 2005 (UK)  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

£200,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The oil-on-canvas depicting the crucifixion used in the film was actually painted by real-life East End gangster Ronnie Kray - it was given to Courtney as a present just before Ronnie died. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Guerrilla film-making at its best
22 March 2006 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Brothers Dave (Courtney) and Larry (Murray) shoot it out in this latter-day Cain and Abel tale set among South-East London's criminal underworld – a vehicle for 'celebrity gangster' Courtney. Shot on "shirt buttons" on a small digital XL1 camera, with no working script (a la Mike Leigh), and rehearsals confined to set, Hell to Pay is guerrilla film-making at its best – the logical extension of Performance, Get Carter, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Yet this sort of thing blows those films, with their smattering of real underworld faces, out of the water. All the movie's publicans are played by real publicans, taxi drivers by taxi drivers, the brasses by real lap dancers and porn stars. And the movie's many 'chaps' are played by the genuine articles, like Roy Shaw and Joey Pyle; though real-life rave promoter Terry Stone / Turbo is far and away the best thing here – funny, scary and screwed-up beyond redemption.

If Hell to Pay seems like gangster chic's last shout, ironically it really has nothing much in common with the phenomenon. As Hell to Pay's editor Brian Hovmand suggests, "The fact that it doesn't look like the typical British gangster movie might be because I'm Danish, and the director's half Spanish." Prior to making the movie, Roberto Gomez-Martin, formerly a respected LWT cameraman, who's never been to film school, played Crow, a patois-affecting hard case in Ian Diaz's quirky crime thriller The Killing Zone. His background is about as far removed from the Revolver director's as is possible to imagine, having being raised on a variety of working-class Battersea council estates, where "someone could punch you in the mouth for just f****ing looking at them". For Gomez-Martin, Ritchie's brand of gangster chic is best summed up with a gladiatorial analogy: "The people in the pit are the working classes and the middle classes have become the spectators: they've paid their money and they want to see something they've never had. Guy Ritchie exemplifies the Jam's 'Eton Rifles'. But some of those people 'who'll be back next week' he's putting in his movies."

But there's no romanticising or mythologising here; eschewing sepia-tints and Mockney accents, the (actually quite understated) Hell to Pay looks the real deal – because it is. It's a virtual gangland video-diary: wives, the bedrocks of working-class culture, hen-peck their spouses, girlfriends go on girls' nights out, murder is clinical, brutal and short, and murder victims stay down. As do bare-knuckle boxers. It isn't the most 'polished' movie around, and if you're looking for a nattily-dressed beer commercial, fax Guy Ritchie (actually, don't bother, if Revolver's anything to go on). But as social document and brazen experiment, this is an achievement of which Gomez-Martin and all concerned should be proud.


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