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Death Wish In The Smoke.,
This review is from: Harry Brown [DVD]  (DVD)
Micheal Caine gives one of his career-best performances in this typically-unromantic British thriller about enough-being-enough. Forget Mr Winner's Hollywood idealisms; this is so gritty it could scratch your screen.
The movie opens with one of many homages to other great works. We meet our London Harry, woken in the morning by his alarm-clock, just as he was in "The Ipcress File", that uber-cool 60's movie that launched him as a young man on the road to stardom. Now here he is in old age, reaching for his inhaler. Alpha & omega. It's a stark presentation of what Britain has already become, and is doomed to become even worse. It's the brave new world of multicultural fallacy and the doctrine of liberal socialism's complete rejection of judgement, punishment, and any sense of social obligation.
Harry Brown is an old guy in the thick of it. Scared - as all of us are now - of speaking out or taking action; because of those doctrinaire authorities and confused police priorities & repraisal from feral scumbags. The movie perfectly represents the fractured state of our once-cohesive communities, and the confused, isolated defeatism of those who were fool enough to trust their political leaders. I'm sorry; I can't help it: this IS a political movie even if it didn't intend to be.
His daughter is murdered. Then his best friend. He decides to do something about it. We learn that he was a former soldier. Highly-decorated. A hard-fighting, hard-drinking wild boy only domesticated by his late wife - echoes of "The Unforgiven" there. He gets drunk to drown his sorrows and a scumbag sees his money and means to get him on the way home. Something similar happened in "Payroll", another great old British crime movie. Despite his age & deteriorating health, a cop on the case begins to suspect him (hints of "Absolute Power", there). There are a number of other believable characters, but mostly they are cameos compared to Caine. This is his movie, and he hauls it along with the fury of a nitrous-injected zimmer-frame.
There's no comedy, precious little irony, but at least reconcilliation towards the end. All is not lost. Things can be turned around; but you may have to blow the scumbags to hell first. Is that a price worth paying? you decide.
Runtime is quoted as 90mins, aspect ratio 2.4:1, viewer rating 18. Got mine from the local supermarket for 3 spons, but the sleave is identical to that shown here. Highly recommended viewing, if you want to know what the rest of Britain will soon resemble - because Harry Browns are too few to count.