This movie took me entirely by surprise. I only knew the sketch of the plot and a few good reviews. I was not prepared for this dazzling, kinetic juggernaut.
Set in a socially crumbling London in 2015, where things are bad at every level with food shortages and rampant violence, you have a small band of friends (The Chaserz) who are dedicated to peace. As they are pulling off a heist to snag some grub, their target is also the target for a larger, more violent lot. The youngest Chaserz' brother is killed in the fight and now revenge is on the platter.
Comparisons to Guy Ritchie are inevitable. Both directors are high powered with style to spare. The difference here is this seems so much more real. There is an immediacy to this that is not apparent in the Ritchie films. I felt as though I was in the streets with these guys. Their padder (the little of it I could make out) sounded like the real deal. And you really like these guys. Their goofy interaction and constant breaking into rap songs endears them to you quickly. One, who could be Jake Gyllenhall's brother, is a particular standout. They are just a good mix of characters.
Then there's the Odyssey. They must clear various hurdles with local chieftains to find out where said rival gang hangs out and get further blessings from other chieftains to do battle. They hook up with some gals out for the same revenge and the doo-doo is on.
I could complain that some of this is, in fact, too Ritchie-esqe but it's a minor quibble compared to all the great stuff going on here. The way it's shot brings the viewer into the action. This is very "in your face." Some of the editing might be too MTV but this is a fast-paced movie and rather requires it. The music flip-flops, for the most part, between rap and industrial type electronic music. I don't usually care for this but, somehow, I found it thrilling here. There are colorful characters, even minor ones, peppered throughout the whole movie.
I don't know where this director, Mo Ali, can go from here. As best I can tell, this appears to be his first outing. I hope he has more ideas than this so I can watch him hit the stratosphere. This might not be everyone's poison but it sure is mine.