The Sweeney Review

Words by Naomi Jeffreys

Ray Winstone leads an star cast in the silver screen adaptation of 1970s show The Sweeney. 

The Rabbit Film has a few gripes about this film, mainly to do with leading man Ray Winstone who hams up the stereotype which he has forged his career on, imagine Jason Statham but about twenty years older, greying and with a chip on his shoulder.

Directed by Nick Love (who certainly plays on the whole Olympics London 2012) with almost every establishing shot being of some famous landmark in London, which gets a tad tiring after two hours.

The film follows; ‘A hardened detective in the Flying Squad of London’s Metropolitan police. Based on the ’70s UK TV show.’ I.e Ray Winstone leading his cock-en-y team all around London, chasing drug smugglers and other bad boys araaand London.

The film feels as though it is playing on the stereotypes of East End London boys who dun good, but with a big budget of an estimated £3,000,00o. Nick Love has many a shoot out, big bust up, chase scenes, cars being destroyed and many other big set pieces, which pull you away from the relationships within the team.

Hayley Atwell is perhaps the only saving grace, despite an odd and slightly cringey story line with Mr Winstone; she has gone away from the ‘Thesp’ type of role which she has become known for and has become the hard arse woman within a team of males. But she feels underused and comes to an abrupt and unsatisfying end.

Whilst Ben Drew (a.k.a Plan B) gives a dull performance, hardly cracking a smile or giving any hint of emotion, apart from the constant scowl which is etched upon his face throughout the film.

In short, Nick Love hams up the East End lads, action sequences, but fails to develop real, believable characters, storylines are left unfinished and one is left rather deflated after such a long time in the cinema.

The Sweeney is out in UK cinemas from today.


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