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A loan shark gives ex-con Nick a period of 24 hours in order to pay back the money he owes. Up against it, Nick involves his best mate on a multi-part mission in order to raise the cash before it's too late for them both. Written by
Nick only just makes the train from Manchester to London before it leaves, but the man following him is already on the train waiting for him. There was no way for the man to know Nick would get that exact train beforehand, and in fact he very nearly did miss it. See more »
Strictly by-the-numbers, but still quite watchable.
The plot: Given 24 hours to pay off his massive debt, a reformed gangster descends back into the underworld he struggled to escape.
Dead Man Running isn't a bad film, but it's strictly by-the-numbers. It lacks the brutal realism of something like Refn's Pusher trilogy or Hodges' Get Carter, operating in a universe more like Guy Ritchie's, where the underworld is populated by idiosyncratic acquaintances, crime bosses with dangerous reputations, and oddball sidekicks. The biggest difference, however, is that this seems like something of a breezy overview of the genre, where each character is given a brief cameo, rather than any kind of reinterpretation. Nobody really has much to work with, but it does give the film a certain simplicity that many people found lacking in Get Carter and Revolver, which are often accused of having overly intricate plotting.
It's not an original movie, but it's enjoyable enough for what it is. If all you want is a simple, mildly violent crime thriller, then this will fit the bill nicely. If you're looking for something a bit deeper or original, I think you'd be better off skipping it. You'll just be bored or annoyed by all the clichés.
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