HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Assimilate
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Mortal
Iron Mask, The
Dinosaur
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Collective
Charulata
Minari
Violation
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Honeydew
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
Escape from Coral Cove
Swan Princess, The
Shortcut
Stray
Butterfly Murders, The
Pimp
Feedback
Lady is a Square, The
Zack Snyder's Justice League
Dark Rendezvous
Silk Road
   
 
Newest Articles
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
   
 
  I'll Sleep When I'm Dead A Man’s Gotta Do What A Man’s Gotta Do
Year: 2003
Director: Mike Hodges
Stars: Clive Owen, Charlotte Rampling, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Jamie Foreman, Ken Stott, Malcolm McDowell, Ross Boatman, Brian Croucher, Sylvia Syms
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 3 votes)
Review: Davey Graham is dead. He was a young man of no great importance, a charmer of women and a small time drug dealer. But he has a brother, Will, a notorious gangster who dropped out of sight and has not been seen for 3 years. Now he is forced to make a reluctant return to the violent streets of south London to find the answer to a simple question, who was responsible for Davey’s death?

An overcast day and a man on a beach hits golf balls into the sea, unaware that he is being observed by a lone suited figure. So begins Mike Hodges’ elusive movie I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead which takes the same premise as his landmark debut, Get Carter. But those expecting a similarly violent thriller will be disappointed for this isn’t a straightforward retread. Will is no Carter and thanks to a restrained and nuanced performance by Clive Owen we come to realise that this isn't a simple tale of revenge. Hodges deliberately drip-feeds the audience information in an intentionally measured movie that embraces film noir techniques with its shadowy cinematography and, assisted by a low-key score, presents a distinct view of the twilight world of south London gangland.

The south London of the film is a place in which gang bosses like Frank Turner (a menacing Ken Stott) silently patrol their domain from the calm comfort of their chauffeur driven cars, overseeing their kingdoms. Those further down the food chain engage in macho posturing and violent outbursts. It is this testosterone fuelled culture that Hodges critiques with characters that are open with their emotions – greeting each other with warm embraces, openly crying at the tragedy of Davey’s death – but at the same time baulk at anything that threatens or makes them question their manliness such as male rape, a plot point that is crucial to the film. Will’s reason for leaving also contravenes this macho world and his return from self-imposed exile is not one he relishes, stopping his van to throw up when nearing the city. His journey to the truth brings him into contact with old friends such as traditional London gangster figure Mickser (Jamie Foreman), a strained reunion with former flame Helen (Charlotte Rampling) and finally a contemptuous Boad, played with an air of casual, vain superiority by Malcolm McDowell. In its climactic moments Hodges’ film again plays with the conventions of the genre and reinforces the director’s obsession with analysing male identity.

A meditation on masculinity I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead is a film that defies expectations and refuses to give easy answers. In the character of Will Graham Hodges and screenwriter Trevor Preston have created a complex individual that doesn’t neatly fit the traditional gangster mould, an observation that applies to the film as a whole. Those looking for something a bit more enigmatic than the conventional revenge film will be rewarded with a movie full of images and themes that linger long in the memory.
Reviewer: Jason Cook

 

This review has been viewed 3812 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Mike Hodges  (1932 - )

British director, from television, with an interesting take on crime movies. His first film was the gritty, gangster cult Get Carter, but the offbeat follow-up Pulp was not as successful. The Terminal Man was a Hollywood science fiction thriller, and Flash Gordon a gloriously over-the-top comic book epic which showed Hodges' good humour to its best effect.

However, the straight comedy Morons from Outer Space was a flop, though it found a few fans, and while IRA drama Prayer for the Dying and the supernatural Black Rainbow weren't successful either, gambling thriller Croupier was an unexpected sleeper hit in America. Tough gangster movie I'll Sleep When I'm Dead followed.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: