Sigh Ritchie

Category: RocknRolla Reviews | Posted by: stagewomanjen
Article Date: September 4, 2008 | Publication: The Sun | Author: Editor
Publication/Article Link:

GUY RITCHIE’S new film has been described as a return to form by some critics.

That is correct if they mean the flat-capped director has form for creating movies with dozens of caricatures from the London underworld who tell each other to “jog on” before a bloodbath ensues.

Form, if they mean there are lots of “street smart” geezers with names like Handsome Bob and Mumbles who each have a part to play in a crime caper gone wrong, but who are never around long enough for anyone to care about their survival.

Not form, though, if you are hoping for the various twisting storylines to snap together in a clever “aha!” moment like they did in Ritchie’s memorable debut Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels.

No, RocknRolla has a sigh- inducing plot which pogos to an “is that it?” ending.

His inspiration is the influx of foreign investors into London, with an estate agent saying property prices are “going one way — up.”

A premise already out of date as thousands of homeowners in negative equity will tell Guy.

The chief investor here is a football and art-loving Russian billionaire mafia boss called Uri Obomavich who looks exactly like one Roman Abramovich.

Romp ... One Two and Stella
Guy should hope that Red Rom’s lawyers aren’t watching.

Helping Uri to bribe officials is “old school” gangster Lenny Cole, who is given a naff Cockney accent by Tom Wilkinson, which should earn the under-par actor a “slap.”

Thankfully, RocknRolla is an improvement on Ritchie’s previous efforts Revolver and Swept Away, mainly because he has rediscovered his knack for comic violence. And Ritchie wittily shows a love session between lead geezer One Two (Gerard Butler in sparkling form) and sexy accountant Stella (Thandie Newton, left with Butler) as a snappy “ooh,” “aah”, zip-up and cig light-up.


But these infrequent moments of genius only confirm what The Sneak has believed for a while — that Guy should stop writing scripts and start directing other people’s movies. Because, while Madonna’s man has run out of intriguing material, he remains a master of visual set-ups.

BEST LINE: Johnny Quid, the rock star of the title, says “Don’t worry, he can’t defend himself, he’s got no head.”

BEST CHARACTER: Relative newcomer Toby Kebbel adds depth to anarchic junkie Quid.

FAMILY RATING: Violence and swearing.

BUM NUMBNESS: A long player.