Intense, ferocious and deeply unsettling, I.D.
is an excellent examination of Britain's unsavoury contribution to global culture: football hooliganism. Whereas Alan Clarke's The Firm
showed the violence that lurked behind a seemingly normal façade, I.D.
posits football hooliganism as a feral temptation. Dedicated, ambitious undercover policeman John (Reece Dinsdale) becomes seduced by the violence of an East London gang, ultimately becoming lost from his regular life with his wife (Clare Skinner). Dinsdale delivers a measured performance that sees him spiral from committed, right-minded policeman to shaven-headed, Nazi-saluting monster, revelling in the violent impulses he embraces with glee and, alarmingly, becoming a hero amongst those he is infiltrating. Warren Clarke is absolutely monstrous as the leader of the hooligan gang, a paragon of bigoted hatred and the embodiment of John's future. Often unnervingly realistic, director Phil Davis is adept at creating riotous mob scenes that chillingly accentuate the world into which John is drawn. It could be said that I.D.
's premise is too thin, and that hooliganism is not addressed in an effective manner, but it is without doubt a chilling character study of the temptation of violence and the horrific influences that lurk in the heart of society. --Danny Graydon
John, an ambitious young copper, is sent undercover into the hardcore football gangs to track down the 'generals' - the shadowy figures who orchestrate the violence. Gradually, the hard drinking, hard fighting macho world proves irresistable and John slowly finds himself turning into one of the thugs he has been sent to destroy.