73 user 54 critic

Rise of the Footsoldier (2007)

The life of career criminal Carlton Leach.



Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

The life of underworld icon Carlton Leach.

Director: Ricci Harnett
Stars: Charlie Heaton, Craig Fairbrass, Luke Mably
Crime | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

An insight on the gritty life of a bored male, Chelsea football hooligan who lives for violence, sex, drugs & alcohol.

Director: Nick Love
Stars: Danny Dyer, Frank Harper, Tamer Hassan
Cass (2008)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

An orphaned Jamaican baby is adopted by an elderly white couple and brought up in an all white area of London and becomes one of the most feared and respected men in Britain. Based on a true story.

Director: Jon S. Baird
Stars: Nonso Anozie, Gavin Brocker, Leo Gregory
Essex Boys (2000)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The film is based loosely around events in December 1995 that culminated in the murders of three drug dealers in Rettendon, Essex, UK. On 6th December Patrick Tate, Craig Rolfe and Tony ... See full summary »

Director: Terry Winsor
Stars: Charlie Creed-Miles, Sean Bean, Gareth Milne
The Business (2005)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Frankie decides he's had enough with his life as a street thug living on a South London estate, and jets off to spain where he meets big time businessman Charlie, who's currently running ... See full summary »

Director: Nick Love
Stars: Danny Dyer, Tamer Hassan, Geoff Bell
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

In 1995, drug suppliers and career criminals Tony Tucker, Patrick Tate and Craig Rolfe were blasted to death by a shot gun whilst waiting in a Range Rover in Rettendon, Essex. The film ... See full summary »

Director: Sacha Bennett
Stars: Dave Legeno, Michael Socha, Vincent Regan
The Firm (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Football hooligans organize themselves into firms that represent their favorite team.

Director: Nick Love
Stars: Paul Anderson, Calum MacNab, Daniel Mays
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Charlie is a London youngster who,with his friends,indulges in streaking and petty crime. However he aspires to better himself though his reckless friend Justin ruins his chances of working... See full summary »

Director: Nick Love
Stars: Paul Nicholls, Roland Manookian, Phil Daniels
Outlaw (2007)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A group of people who feel betrayed by their government and let down by their police force form a modern-day outlaw posse in order to right what they see as the wrongs of society.

Director: Nick Love
Stars: Sean Bean, Danny Dyer, Rupert Friend
Awaydays (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

On the Wirral in the grim early years of Margaret Thatcher's premiership, the opportunities for thrill seeking young men looking to escape 9 to 5 drudgery are what they've always been: sex,... See full summary »

Director: Pat Holden
Stars: Nicky Bell, Liam Boyle, Stephen Graham
Adulthood (2008)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Six years after KiDULTHOOD, Sam Peel is released from jail for killing Trife, he realizes that life is no easier on the outside than it was on the inside and he's forced to confront the ... See full summary »

Director: Noel Clarke
Stars: Noel Clarke, Scarlett Alice Johnson, Adam Deacon
Director: Zackary Adler
Stars: Craig Fairbrass, Terry Stone, Josh Myers


Cast overview, first billed only:
Coralie Rose ...
Darren Nicholls
Andy Linden ...


Rise of the Footsoldier follows the inexorable rise of Carlton Leach from one of the most feared generals of the football terraces to becoming a member of a notorious gang of criminals who rampaged their way through London and Essex in the late eighties and early nineties. It is three decades of his life following him from football hooliganism, through to his burgeoning career as a bouncer, his involvement in the criminal aspects of the early 'rave' scene and subsequently to his rise to power as one of the most feared and respected criminals in the country. Written by Julian Gilbey

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody/brutal violence, torture and language throughout, drug use, sexuality, and some graphic nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »



Release Date:

1 December 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Boсхождение пехотинца  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£85,903 (UK) (7 September 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Kierston Waring has played kate/Karen in three Films about the Range Rover murders in Rettendon. Fall of the Essex boys (2013), Bonded by Blood (2010) and Rise of the Footsoldier (2007) See more »


When the ICF are on the bus to Man Utd game (5 mins in to film) they are spraying cans of alcohol and you can see a can of Magners (black can introduced in 2007). See more »


[first lines]
Carlton Leach: It was the end of an era. But before the murders, the torture, the beatings and the ecstacy... before all of that, there was football. You see, football was where all the spite and the hatred first came from. On those terraces... well, it's where it all began for me.
See more »


Referenced in Bad Movie Beatdown: Reckoning Day (2011) See more »


Cherry Red
Written by Tony McPhee
Performed by The Groundhogs
EMI Music publishing Ltd
Licensed by courtesy of EMI Records Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"When coke deals go bad..."
3 September 2007 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Let's face it; Reservoir Dogs wasn't so much a movie about a diamond heist gone wrong as it was about a gang of actors that wanted to be Lee Marvin. Rise of the Footsoldier (Released 7th of September) is nothing more or less than a bunch of Scorsese fanatics who wished they'd been in Goodfellas – and be fair, who wouldn't?

'Footsoldier' is a gangster film – pure and simple. "Professional" Football hooligans the I.C.F (Inner City Firm) have met their nemesis with a combination of high profile arrests. With the emergence of the 'rave' scene of the late 80's they recognise the lucre generating possibilities of the new counter culture; get 'loved up', 'steam' the groovy train and swap their Stanley knives and knuckle dusters for smiley T. Shirts, Kickers and eh… shotguns. Quickly establishing themselves as major 'faces' in the Essex underworld, it isn't long before these Knights of the glass table are running their cocaine Camelot through a gamut of girls, guns and high friends in dangerous places.

Based on a real life 1995 'hit' which rendered three of those face's blown off at a secluded dirt track in Retterdon, the cinematic possibilities of what is now known as 'The Range Rover Killings' has not been lost on movie land. The semi fictional Essex Boys (2000) took its cue from this pivotal event in gangland history but 'Footsoldier' is a more authentic account, retaining the facts and the actual characters as recounted in 'Muscle', the book written by one of the surviving members of the gang Carlton Leach, played here by a shark eyed Ricci Harnett.

'Footsoldier' also boasts an impressive array of T.V tough guys including Ex-Eastender's Bill Murray and Craig Fairbrass, whose soap appearances had hitherto had me scrambling for the off switch. Both are excellent here, with Murray exuding menace from every pore and Fairbrass chillingly convincing as the 'roid' crazed Pat Tate. Mover and shaker Terry Stone has a face that suggests all the members of the Clash at once and follows his impressive turn in Gilby's last movie, the very excellent 'Rollin' With The Nines' as Tony Tucker; a one man swear-a-thon sporting a syrup that looked liked it could have been a stunt double for Dougal in the Magic Roundabout.

Brandishing its Scorsese-isms loudly and proudly (sweeping crane shots, freeze frame voice overs etc) 'Footsoldier' is no 'feel good' film by any stretch. But there is much to enjoy from watching these guys 'go ta woik' in a similar, but darker fashion to ensemble piece 'Love, Honour & Obey' (Was I the only one that liked that film?!) or the aforementioned Reservoir Dogs. Perhaps not quite dislodging any of the unholy trinity of Get Carter, Brighton Rock and The Long Good Friday from their lofty throne, Rise of the Foot Soldier doesn't let up for a second and holds its own as a 'balls out', 'in yer face' thrill ride, and certainly a worthy addition to the 'Grit Brit' gangster pantheon.

Adrian Stranik

82 of 122 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anybody believe Mickey Steele and Jack Whomes are innocent?? btownsend8366
Most horrible scene RenlyStannis
Straight ahead fun, no Hollywood b.s. btownsend8366
has a crime/subject ever had as many films done about it? bigbadbill-41600
Can Anyone Tell Me Something Good About This Film ? fraser5285
Thought this was one of the best gangster films ive seen in awhile donmunk321
Discuss Rise of the Footsoldier (2007) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: