Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 125 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: In this wild comedy of errors, a group of London friends find themselves deep in debt to an unsavory underworld figure.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 3 out of 30
  1. 90
    A dynamite bundle from British writer-director Guy Ritchie. Even when the accents are as indecipherable as the plot, Ritchie keeps the action percolating and the humor on high.
  2. 89
    With such a frenetic, brain-melting load of images to ponder, it's easy to forget that there are also some terrific actors at work here, not the least of whom is the amazing Vinnie Jones.
  3. 80
    Ritchie appears to have been paying attention to what made "Reservoir Dogs" (a huge hit in the UK) work, rather than coming away convinced that the formula for success begins and ends with pop-culture allusions and scarcely digested "homages" to classic crime films.
  4. 75
    Plenty of fun, less for its many plot twists than for its large and varied assortment of vibrant characters. [12 Mar 1999]
  5. Reviewed by: Gemma Files
    70
    One of the most consistently amusing ways in which it frustrates audience expectations has to do with how amazingly little of this very violent cast of characters' violence actually ends up being expressed onscreen.
  6. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    63
    A half-funny, half-ugly comedy about underworld ineptitude. [5 Mar 1999]
  7. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    30
    The laborious title of an even more laborious Cockney action movie that some people think is the cat's pajamas crossbred with the bee's knees.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 32
  2. Negative: 1 out of 32
  1. AdamS.
    Oct 27, 2005
    10
    Brilliant plot development. Guy Ritchie proves that he has what it takes with this movie. It outshines, dare I say it, Quentin Tarantino and Pulp Fiction. Expand
  2. Jul 23, 2011
    10
    Critics score is 66??? WTF
    This is an amazing movie. Some funny moments in it, and entertaining from start to finish and plenty of memorable
    lines.
    In my opinion (i think im not alone here) the best British movie ever made. Deserves all the praise it gets.
    Expand
  3. Dec 3, 2013
    10
    This is about as good a movie about the East End that you can get. Not sure Americans can get the layers and implications, however, stating fact, Americans cannot make movies like this. Beneath every grimace, scowl or threatening words, there's history and culture and classes. The toffs as opposed to the yardies and the locals make this a treasure. Even though all Brits understand each other, language is only half the picture. Our verbals tell us within a few sentences almost everything about that person. Education, social class, status etc. Our villains are true villains. Well hard! Blokes who'll put it about with their fists and character. The multi layers of any interaction actually mean, unless you are from the UK, you get only 50% of the communication. We are connected in such a way that the Queen's beans on toast would be the same as the lad from Peckham. Prince Phillip is excluded since he is as unBrit as Madge, (Madonna). We actually live and die together as a nation, as one. We really know each other!
    This movie weaves East End culture like a Terry McCann, Arfur Daley episode. Essentially it's a gem!
    Something that reflects everything British, not the PBS codswallop, Americans are enamored with.
    It makes one almost sad that everyone except a Brit is able to understand the complexity and wonder that this movie is. That beautiful language that is evident, took centuries. The slang and violence doesn't convey except to a non Brit, just how gentle and patient the people are. Eg. and this isn't racist, simply trying to convey the beauty that is Britain. Black players are revered in Milwall.
    The language used here is probably baffling to non Brits, which is exactly the effect intended. Unless you know specifically what you are talking about Critics, you only demonstrate ignorance and how daft you really are.
    Expand
  4. Aug 14, 2011
    9
    The plot is complex yet understandable and enjoyable. The comedy is pretty good. Their English accents are not good but it doesn't get in the way of the film that much, cause it's a comedy you can't take it too seriously. Expand
  5. Nov 4, 2012
    9
    Mad bad and highly entertaining, I really enjoyed this film. I particularly liked the fact that when things got particularly violent the camera wasn
  6. Jul 15, 2013
    8
    Absolute classic Amazing film. Funny gags and one-liners, great action and the way that all the different character's story's come together is genius. 10/10. Expand
  7. Jun 19, 2011
    3
    It was impossible for me to become involved with this film. None of the actors convinced me. Every line of dialogue they spat out sounded so forced, like they didn't believe in the characters they were playing. Some of the dialogue isn't very well written in the first place. There's one line that Dexter Fletcher said that goes "Also, I think knives are a good idea... Knives are good, because they don't make any noise, and the less noise they make, the more likely we are to use them", and I thought to myself, Is this guy trying to sell me knives? Vinnie Jones was the only one who really impressed me. I wanted to see more of the guy. He played his part perfectly, nailed every scene he was in, and I loved that his character brought his son around for everything like it was "Bring Your Kid To Work Day". I also felt the narration by Alan Ford, you gotta love his accent, but I felt some of the stuff he narrated made it sound like he was talking down to me instead of telling me things I couldn't have figured out otherwise. It was condescending and intrusive, chiming in at all the wrong times. The only good writing is evident at the very end of the movie, the "cliffhanger" ending, which I thought was brilliantly scripted and played out. Another issue I have with the film is the dirty look it has. I know this is accounted for its low budget, but the amber lighting and the heavy grain, it's not a pretty mix, and it's one of the ugliest-looking films I've ever seen. Expand

See all 32 User Reviews

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