Never Seen It: Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

NSI_Lock Stock

BY ERIN TORRANCE

Date released: March 5, 1999 (limited release in North America, but released nearly a year earlier in the UK)

Date watched: November 25, 2013

Why now?: With Jason Statham starring in Homefront, I thought I’d check out something from the actor’s past. You know, see what he was all about some 15 years ago. Why not, right?

Why not then?: Well. I can’t say that I have much of a reason aside from the simple fact that I was 10 years old and it’s rated “R.” My parents weren’t too liberal when it came to ratings and our screening of racy films (a responsible choice). They always implemented the “three-swears policy” (I’m sure that’s self-explanatory).

Expectations:

  • With Guy Ritchie directing and having just watched Snatch not long ago, I expected something of the like, getting super-close to faces, pausing for back stories and so on.
  • Considering its “R” rating, extreme violence, lots of blood, nudity and sex (of course) and language that would greatly exceed the three-swears policy.
  • Interesting interactions between individuals involved in a variety of crimes in varying degrees.

What I actually got:

  • My expectation for a film in Snatch style was met for sure, which was perfect.
  • A lot of conversation that I didn’t quite catch, but some super useful subtitles for the particularly tricky diction. I usually find subtitles to be a tricky aspect of a film to deal with; they’re necessary, but then with me being a slow reader, it can be hard to read and see what’s happening at the same time (I often miss little details, and well, multi-tasking isn’t my best suit). In this instance, they were used for humour, which made it perfect for people like me who can’t focus on two things at once. And when they were, nothing really changed on-screen, so I didn’t miss a thing.
  • A great cast. I can’t say that I recognize many of the names from this film, but they all worked well together, characters were believable and they contrasted nicely.
  • Great humour. It was a bit dark at times (i.e. laughing at unexpected deaths/outrageous numbers of deaths), but entirely entertaining.
  • I have to say that ratings back then were, well, maybe more strict? Intense? Whatever it is, there was much less nudity, sex and swearing than I expected. Sure, there was a lot of violence, but most of the instances that seemed more brutal weren’t shown on-screen. We saw the characters making the motions, but we couldn’t see what exactly they were doin, which wasn’t a loss, just a surprise. (With Homefront rated “R” as well, it will be interesting to see how it stacks up to the 1998 “R” rating.)
  • A collision of plots, somehow twisting together for a humorous conclusion.

One night-in stand or second date potential?: This one could almost go either way. Of course, the mystery factor wouldn’t be so great the second time around, but I don’t feel that it’s all that pivotal to the film. In all, the conversations, situations, relations and predicaments that the characters get into are what make this film enjoyable—and that’s all worth a second viewing.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JwUu55Oa7rE]
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