7.3/10
51,478
142 user 91 critic

Shallow Grave (1994)

Trailer
1:26 | Trailer

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Three friends discover their new flatmate dead but loaded with cash.

Director:

Danny Boyle

Writer:

John Hodge
14 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kerry Fox ... Juliet Miller
Christopher Eccleston ... David Stephens
Ewan McGregor ... Alex Law
Ken Stott ... Detective Inspector McCall
Keith Allen ... Hugo
Colin McCredie ... Cameron
Victoria Nairn Victoria Nairn ... Woman Visitor
Gary Lewis ... Male Visitor
Jean Marie Coffey Jean Marie Coffey ... Goth
Peter Mullan ... Andy
Leonard O'Malley Leonard O'Malley ... Tim
David Scoular David Scoular ... Cash Machine Victim
Grant Glendinning Grant Glendinning ... Bath Victim
Victor Eadie Victor Eadie ... Freezer victim
Robert David MacDonald Robert David MacDonald ... Lumsden
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Storyline

The new flatmate of three preexisting roommates turns up mysteriously dead but in possession of a large sum of money. When the roommates decide to keep it for themselves, their action sets in motion a destructive chain of events that spiral out of control. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The award winning thriller that'll bury you with laughs. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for scenes of strong grisly violence, and for some language and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 February 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Petits meurtres entre amis See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£734,340 (United Kingdom), 20 January 1995

Gross USA:

$2,881,508

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$20,500,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was heavily criticized for its seemingly cold characters. When questioned about the criticisms Danny Boyle responded saying that building plausible characters is something that pleases intellectuals, but audiences in general don't invest much as much into the characters in a film. See more »

Goofs

Several scenes supposedly take place at night, yet when the stairwell is featured, sunlight is pouring in through the windows. See more »

Quotes

Juliet Miller: You're frightened.
Alex Law: I'm not frightened. I'm a little terrified, maybe.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits appear over images of the three main characters in happier times, ironically all laughing hysterically. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jersey Girl (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

My Baby Just Cares for Me
Written by Walter Donaldson and Gus Kahn
Performed by Nina Simone
See more »

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User Reviews

 
House Of Straw, Ton Of Bricks
17 October 2005 | by cchaseSee all my reviews

See, there's these three little piggies (Ewan McGregor, Kerry Fox and Christopher Eccleston) who live together as flatmates in Glasgow. The one thing that ties them together more than the genial contempt they have for one another, is the DOUBLE amount of contempt they have for everyone else. To take in extra rent money, they decide to let a spare room in their place. After having a lot of fun at the expense of many 'unsuitable' candidates, they decide to award the spot to a very dodgy looking character named Hugo, (Keith Allen), who has a shady demeanor and a rather large suitcase.

This situation is ripe for betrayal, deceit, coercion and oh, let's not leave out murder, shall we? It's dynamite with an unlit fuse, just missing a match. And that 'match' is finally struck when the three roommates find a nude Hugo dead the next morning in his room, and that in his mysterious suitcase is more cash than the three of them combined will make in a year.

Anybody hear a sizzling noise in the background? That's nothing. The explosion is coming, and it is a DOOZY! Director Danny Boyle and writer John Hodge certainly know their noir thrillers, and they skilfully weave the strands of this twisted story together like a Hitchcock chamber piece, filtered through the gimlet-eyed gaze of the Coen Brothers. With a Glaswegan accent, of course.

The acting is top notch, especially Ewan in his first major movie role. The realistic outcome of each nerve-wracking situation ratchets up the suspense and the tension without a single false note, as the 'straw' friendships of these three not-so-likable characters goes up in a puff of spontaneous combustion...all for, as the O'Jays put it so aptly, "the love of money."

And speaking of classic songs, a great director knows how to infuse a scene with just the right touch of irony, comedy or even downright horror, such as what Quentin Tarantino did with the confectionery pop standard from Stealer's Wheel, "Stuck In The Middle With You." I could tell from the word 'go' that Danny Boyle would be one artist to watch, just through the way he took a gooey retro classic like Andy Williams' "Happy Heart," and infused it with chillingly fitting gallows humor for GRAVE'S jaw-dropping ending, that will stay with you long after you've seen it...even after the second or third time! No matter how many times I watch it, it still hits me like a ton of...well, you know...

Highly recommended, with great scoring work from artists like Simon Boswell, Leftfield and Tomandandy.


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