HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Halloween Kills
Cicada
Sun Shines Bright, The
Last Thing Mary Saw, The
Comets
Herself
Mon Oncle d'Amerique
Wild Strawberries
Runner, The
Don't Look Up
Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Eternals
Forever Purge, The
Memoria
Venom: Let There Be Carnage
Legend of La Llorona, The
Japon
Glasshouse
Perdita Durango
Commando, The
Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror
Boiling Point
Malignant
Deadly Games
Ailey
Voyeurs, The
Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes
In the Earth
Hiroshima Mon Amour
Hotel Poseidon
Zola
No Time to Die
Klaus
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey
Candyman
Power of the Dog, The
StageFright
Voyage of Time: An IMAX Documentary
Suicide Squad, The
One Night in Miami...
   
 
Newest Articles
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
Vestron Double Bill: Dementia 13 and The Wraith
Farewell Dean Stockwell: His Years of Weirdness
Kung Fu Craft: Cinematic Vengeance! on Blu-ray
999 Letsbe Avenue: Gideon's Way on Blu-ray
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
   
 
  Shifty Brit Grit With A Heart
Year: 2008
Director: Eran Creevy
Stars: Riz Ahmed, Daniel Mays, Jason Flemyng, Nitin Ganatra, Jay Simpson, Dannielle Brent, Francesca Annis, Kate Groombridge, Jason Maza, Jordan Long, Rory Jennings, Courtney Day
Genre: Drama, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  8 (from 1 vote)
Review: In the same vein as the sublime Shane Meadows, Eran Creevy makes his entrance on to the screen, with his directorial debut Shifty. If you’re expecting Lock Stock or Snatch, you’re going to have to have a rethink – these cockney loud mouths have got a heart.

Chris (Daniel Mays) arrives back in London, fresh from Manchester complete with a good job, steady income and, the ultimate sign for anyone under 30 that you’ve really ‘made it’ (especially in these current climes), a mortgage. The eponymous Shifty (Riz Ahmed) who he’s come to visit, on the other hand, doesn’t have a job and lives with his brother (played with aplomb by Easties resident postie, Nitin Ganatra) who continuously reminds him that he’s well a bit of a waster – he got 4 ‘A’ levels, dontcha know?

The lack of work doesn’t seem to be harming Shifty’s trainer collection much though – there’s enough in his room to rival Nike town – which raises Chris’s suspicions that there’s more to his old mate than loafing around watching telly and eating fry-ups. The answer, of course, is lying in the bottom of the freezer (or the washing machine drawer)… Drugs. And not just a bid of weed, as Chris points out, Shifty ain’t messing about with his business, he’s going all out on the hard stuff.

And so the weekend ain’t quite the quiet beer down the pub, party later that Chris had in mind. Well, it is, but first he’s gotta help Shifty, erm, shift the gear… The pair of them head out for the local estates ready to dish out the meds to their neighboring addicts, which includes a turn from the theatre lovey Francesca Annis – a somewhat out-of-place cat-obsessed crystal meth smoker.

Everything seems to be going to plan (except for a wonderful sequence in which the pair become embroiled in an off-the-back-of-a-lorry escapade), that is until, the seemingly innocuous, Trevor (Jay Simpson) enters the picture. He’s been hanging around all morning trying to pin down Shifty for a fix but to no avail, so when he eventually tracks him down, in desperation, he manages to mug him for everything – cash ‘n’ crack.

It’s here that the turn to the dark side, reminiscent of Meadows work, comes into play as plunged into despair the long-term buddies reveal things to one another that they’d been keeping under wraps – reasons why Chris went up north and why there’s animosity directed at him when anyone appears to recognise him. But they’ll need to get over their tiff quick when bad guy Glen (Jason Flemyng) succeeds in stitching Shifty up with the head honcho, whilst his brother’s found the remainder of his stash… Will he be following Chris home? Or taking a trip down stream? – in a body bag, that is…

A cracking film from first-timer Creevy, Shifty deserves to be on the to-see list for everyone this springtime. The director’s certainly picked up a thing or two with his previous work in the industry, especially assisting Matthew Vaughn on Layer Cake it would seem. However, bringing in the buddy-movie elements adds to its appeal more than its predecessors that it’s bound to draw comparisons with.

Drugs might appear to be at the forefront of this tale, but it’s friendship that’s truly at the heart of it. You’ve only got to see the scene on the playground with the pair ‘larking’ about to know that it’s more than just another tale about the trouble with London. You can’t help but smile at the “mates” as they, almost obsessively, refer to one another; the performances from Mays (it’s nice to see him afforded a central role for once) and Ahmed seem completely genuine, and dappy Malik (Jason Maza), although short-lived, makes the best of his time on the screen.

Shifty ain’t just another grim depiction of the seedy underbelly of our capital – I think we could all do without that, thanks – this is about sticking together through the good and the bad. That’s just what the film provides a bit of nastiness, but with a few laughs (stuffed cat, or two, anyone?) to keep us all sane… Before we totally despair of the world. I’m even starting to get more hopeful about British cinema…
Reviewer: Hannah Tough

 

This review has been viewed 3946 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


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
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: