This is a very good film which I was very surprised about as there have been a fair few Brit duds of late. This stars Joe Cole as Tommy Nicks, he is `a father to be' with his girl who is also a probation officer in one of the less upmarket parts of London. After the London riots she has a slight spike in workload and gets herself into a position where she might pose a threat to the local vilainary. So they take swift and Draconian action, resulting in Tommy's world being blown upside down.
He is left with nothing but revenge on his mind so tracks them down to a Young Offenders Institution (YOI) and gets himself incarcerated to exact retribution. On the way he will have to deal with nasty screws, nasty inmates, nasty cops and some very nasty goings on indeed.
This then is a sort of `Scum' meets `Death Wish' and it is all done very well with a not very well known cast. There are some issues with plot and factual procedures re the police and even in the YOI, but that does not really mar what is actually a visceral and gritty piece of cinema. Special mention has to go to Shaun Dooley as nasty Prison Guard, Nash (`The Woman in Black'), who plays the ambiguous loser with aplomb. The language is all urban street and so for some they may wish they had sub titles, but it actually eases off as the film progresses and it all adds to the realism. Whilst it is violent, it does not play on those incidents as this is actually a moody thriller and the tension and underlying violence is palpable throughout.
The music is good, the direction is good and the acting is well good as some might say, all of the kids have attitude and pimp rolls. There is a walk on by a mad Scottish guy called Genghis played by new comer Brian Vernel and he was bloody genius, so keep an eye out for him. All in all a very good Brit Crime Thriller and very well worth checking out; writer Paul van Carter has made a very decent follow up to his 2010 offering `Shank' and I hope this film does even better.