Written and Directed by: Paul W. S. Anderson
Produced by: Jeremy Bolt, among others
Cinematography by: Tony Imi
Edited by: David Stiven
Original Score by: Barrington Pheloung
Starring: Sadie Frost, Jude Law, Sean Pertwee, Fraser James, Sean Bean, Marianne Faithfull, Jonathan Pryce, Daniel Newman, Lee Whitlock, Ralph Ineson, Eamonn Walker, Jason Isaacs
Synopsis: Recently released from jail, rebellious teen Billy (Jude Law) and his girlfriend Jo (Sadie Frost) find entertainment in British suburbia through joyriding and ram-raiding local businesses, much to the annoyance of police chief Conway (Jonathan Pryce) and rival gang-leader/ram-raider Tommy (Sean Pertwee).
The synopsis on Netflix sounded peculiar enough to be interesting, and never having seen any of Paul W. S. Anderson’s work before (though hearing a lot of not-so-positive things about it) I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt and check out his debut film. I was hoping for an action-packed or at least stylistic genre piece, but in reality it was DOWNRIGHT. FUCKING. BORING..
The film is less than two hours long but it feels even longer. There are too many scenes that go on way too long, with hollow conflicts, dull dialogue, as well as what I’m pretty certain was shameless product placement. What makes these scenes drag on even longer is the cast of flat and uninteresting characters. The actors try to make the most of it through the occasional crazy outbursts in an attempt to show depth but it comes off as ridiculous and pathetically melodramatic. There’s very little action and it’s not even choreographed/shot well. And it should be noted that a film that wastes Jonathan Pryce by only giving him a small handful of lines, as well as only giving Sean Bean one measly scene (in which he isn’t even killed off!), is a cinematic crime—a misdemeanor, at the very least.
From now on I’m sticking with Paul THOMAS Anderson, or possibly even WES Anderson, as this was the first and probably last Paul W. S. Anderson film I’ll ever see.