Moderator / Reviewer
- Apr 4, 2017
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Ahhh, Guy Ritchie. The man’s name instantly brings to mind college outings watching Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels back to back with Snatch on a Saturday night. The man had a Tarantinoesque flair for dialog (just with a British flair), and he had a tendency of making a story within a story, within a story. Complete with twists, turns, double turns, and even quadruple turns before it gets to the verbose and cheeky ending that wasn’t seen coming due to the fact that Guy Ritchie always kept the most important bit of information that would be used to unravel the whole thing off screen, away from guessing fans who could figure things out with it in play. He was a genius in my young mind’s eye, and he still is. Snatch is perhaps one of my most watched Blu-ray and remains one of my favorite movies of all times. Even his foray into more traditional films with the Sherlock Holmes films with Robert Downey Jr. were rather fun, even if they were a deviation from traditional Holmes structures. That being said, Ritchie went into some rather odd directions for his normal Cheeky British gangster style with the 2019 live action Aladdin, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (which I actually liked), and 2015’s bombing remake of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. . I know that a director has to spread his wings and go new directions, but the prolific gonzo director just wasn’t able to really grasp those genres well, and felt a bit out of his element. 2019 brought the man back full circle to his roots, going deep into the British gangster world, complete with typical Guy Ritchie dialog, and plenty of double and triple backs to keep the viewers guessing in The Gentlemen.
Like usual, we’re introduced to a whole plethora of sundry characters in the first few minutes, but the ones we’re really going to focus on is Michael Pearson (Matthew McConaughey), a British born American who is the U.K.’s largest weed distributor. He’s made a fortune for himself over the years, ingratiating himself with the highest class of people imaginable, but he has a conundrum. Michael “Mickey” is getting up in years and he wants to enjoy his golden years as a legit man, rubbing elbows with the elite and not having to deal with the day to day life of being a gangster. So he’s going to sell his entire weed operation (which will be worth billions in the coming years if handled right) to a Jewish gangster by the name of Matthew (Jeremy Strong) for a solid $400 million. Simple, easy, and quick.
However, nothing is ever quick in this world, as a private investigator named Fletcher (Hugh Grants) decides to pay a visit to Mickey’s right hand man Ray (Charlie Hunnam) and extort $20 million pounds from after getting some JUICY information about the deal that was suddenly going to go sideways. What unfolds is a crazy and chaotic merry go round ride as Mickey is suddenly forced to fight off attacks from all angles, as everyone smells his sale of the business as weakness and are honing in for the kill in hopes of tearing what flesh they can off the bone before it’s all gone. Leaving poor Mickey in the position of having to fend off his business from said unscrupulous knaves in a battle of whits that con only leave one criminal standing.
The film is exciting, twisted, violent, hilarious, and purely Guy Ritchie to the core. Everyone is magnificent in their roles and the ending, while a bit anti-climactic, fits in perfectly with the opening theme of the movie. Charlie Hunnam is actually excellent for once instead of being a wooden board, and watching Hugh Grant ham it up on screen as a sleazy P.I. with an angle is hilarious. However, it’s Matthew McConaughey who really shines as Mickey Pearson, the crazy and contingency prepared weed gangster. He’s cool, calculated, and smooth as $150 scotch down the gullet. The movie itself suffers a bit in the 3rd act with a bit too much going on, but that final 20 minutes is just gold. Everything unfolds like vicious clockwork, and every loose end tied up neatly in a boy, leaving the audience with a satisfied grin on their faces.
Rated R for violence, language throughout, sexual references and drug content
4K Video: Video:
• Glossary of Cannabis - Featurette
• Behind the Scenes of The Gentlemen - Featurette
• Photo Gallery
Guy Ritchie is a man of many talents, but The Gentlemen puts him back into the comfortable position of being his home style. That of a British Gangster film with copious twists and turns, and stunning ensemble performances. It’s a bit more polished and smoother than the likes of Rock n’ Roll, Snatch and Revolver, but still having that gritty, cheeky humor that endeared him to so many people around the turn of the century. The 4K UHD is utterly fantastic, with great video and audio, but sadly some meager extras. Definitely worth checking out, especially if you’re a fan of Ritchie’s earlier works.
Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Michelle Dockery, Colin Farrell, Henry Golding, Hugh Grant, Eddie Marsan
Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Written by: Guy Ritchie, Marn Davies, Ivan Atkinson
Aspect Ratio:2.39:1 HEVC
Audio: Cantonese: Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 Core),
Subtitles: English SDH , Spanish
Runtime: 114 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: April 21st 2020
Recommendation: Very Good Watch