Friday, August 08, 2008

"Lock, stock, the fuckin' lot"...

...said Barry the Baptist played by the late Lenny McLean, better known as "The Guv'nor". Lenny was a famed East End of London bare-knuckle fighter, bouncer, former criminal, author, television presenter, and actor; McLean was often referred to as "the hardest man in Britain” and was but one of the brilliant cast of the movie Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels came out in Britain in 1998 and I saw it for the first time around 2001 and have been a die hard fan of writer/director Guy Ritchie ever since (although it wasn't hard to kill my enthusiasm for him after viewing even the first 5 minutes of Swept Away).

Lock, Stock began it's life as a twenty-minute short film called The Hard Case which was viewed by Trudie Styler, (wife of Sting) who invested money into Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels (her husband would play a role in this feature film as well).

The story of Lock, Stock is a heist film involving a self-confident young card sharp (yes, it's SHARP. Look it up) who loses £500,000 to a powerful crime lord in a rigged game of three card brag. In order to pay off his debts, he and his friends decide to rob a small-time gang who happen to be operating out of the flat next door.

The film introduced actors Vinnie Jones, a former Welsh international football player, and Jason Statham, to worldwide audiences and has in it more twists and turns, tongue-in-cheek humor and what I like to call "brain-scenes" than most directors could put in their movies during their entire careers.

What's a brain scene you ask? It's a scene that moves too fast for your typical dumb-ass to follow, but that those of use with full sets of frontal lobes follow and get completely. Brain scenes are a perfect way to weed the morons out of your life, just show them one and if they don't get it, they suck. Period.

The film was produced by Matthew Vaughn (of whom I am also a MASSIVE fan) who went on to direct Layer Cake which actually nearly surpasses any and every movie EVER in sheer brilliance. It's that good! But that's another review...

Interestingly, the body count of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is only 17. In chronological order:

1. Smithy Robinson - bludgeoned to death with "a 15-inch black rubber cock" by Harry
2. Gordon's unnamed associate - beaten to death with a golf club
3. Gordon - killed with a Chef's knife sharpening steel by Dog
4. Mickey - shot by Gloria
5. Paul - killed in the shootout at Eddie and Bacon's place
6. John - killed in the shootout at Eddie and Bacon's place
7-10. Rory Breaker's 4 henchmen - killed in the shootout at Eddie and Bacon's place
11. Plank - shot several times, until finally killed by Rory Breaker
12. Rory Breaker - shot by Plank
13. Dean - shot in the chest by Harry
14. Harry Londsdale - shot several times by Gary
15. Gary - killed with a hatchet to the back by Barry
16. Barry - shot in the stomach by Gary
17. Dog - crushed repeatedly by a car-door, kicked and beaten by Big Chris

...and that should give you a little idea of what's in store, but it's really not even the tip of the proverbial iceberg. My opinion of this movie? It's one of the best ever made and is surpassed only by Ritchie's follow up, Snatch. But that's another review also...

If you've not seen Lock, Stock.., you're a loser. It's that simple. At least in the realm of cinema. Find it, buy it (because if you rent it you'll just end up buying it anyway so why not skip a step)? Follow it up with Snatch (take that any way you like...) and learn what it's like to be a Ritchie fan. There you go...'nuff said. Except to show you the trailer and to thank Gypsy James for egging me on to do this!
(((03)))

1 Comments:

Blogger Gypsy James said...

When I saw you'd actually done the review, via Google Reaader, I was impressed...and read on....

I liked, and agreed with what you'd written, and am amazed by the levels that you've gone into, brilliant!

..but when I saw you'd name-checked me for the prompt I nearly pissed myself laughing.. (Only nearly though, I'm not that geriatric just yet!)

Top write-up, & I can see you have the eye for the detail.....

Jimbo.

3:55 PM  

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