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Somewhere, deep down, there still is a great movie hidden here. It had all of the right ingredients in it to become a great crime movie, done in a very typical raw British style but the movie as it turned was still mostly a disappointing one.

Reason why the movie isn't as good as it potential could had been is because it's lacking focus and is trying to do and tell far too many things. The movie features simply far too many different plot lines and characters in it, which are all really fine, if only they were being the basis of a different and separate movie on their own.

The movie is being drama about a guy trying to settle in again, after being released from jail but it's also a crime movie, that features a very crime-like and thriller type of plot in it. And if that wasn't enough already; it also tries to be a romantic movie. There is never really a right balance between any of these different aspects, which makes this a very uneven movie, that also doesn't really work out the way it was supposed to because of all of this.

Especially the romantic plot line suffered from this. In the movie there was absolutely no reason for the Colin Farrell and the Keira Knightley to fall in love with each other. Which was odd, since they still seemed to have some good chemistry together. The movie however never makes it seem believable or logical and you even wonder why it's in the movie at all, since it doesn't even seem to be all that important for the movie and its main story, once you really start thinking back about it.

It still is a great movie with some great actors and acting in it. Keira Knightley plays mostly herself and she actually is hardly in the movie at all, so she doesn't impress all that much but Colin Farrell on the other hand is truly great in this. The movie also has a truly great supporting cast, with actors such as David Thewlis, Ray Winstone and Ben Chaplin all involved.

The thing that also helped to save the movie, was the fact that this remains a very well made film. It has a good style to it and also nothing wrong with its storytelling. It just is the story itself that isn't all that great because it tries too hard to impress, with as many different ideas in it as possible. Still a valiant attempt by writer turned director William Monahan and I'm still very interested in seeing more movies done by him. I'm sure that if he continues to do more movies as a director, he will become more successful at it and has the capability to make some really great crime movies. A genre that obviously suits him well, despite the fact that this movie is still mostly being somewhat of a disappointment and just not entirely successful enough at what it's all trying to achieve.

It really had far more potential in it.

6/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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