Written and directed with a rakish swagger, and featuring two full-on performances from Tom Hardy, this true London gangster drama is hugely entertaining, even if it feels undercooked. Aside from that generic title, the film basically has no plot at all, and it strips real-life people of their complexity. It's as if the filmmakers were afraid to challenge the audience in any way. But the edgy mix of comedy and violence is riveting.
The events recounted took place over about two years in the early 1960s, although the film's anecdotal structure makes it feel more like a decade. As it begins, the fearsome young Kray brothers (both played by Tom Hardy) are consolidating their gangland grip on East London and expanding around the city, with their next target being South London boss Charlie Richardson (Paul Bettany). Reggie Kray is the tough-minded businessman, while identical twin Ronnie is a terrifying thug who happens to be openly gay at a time when being so was illegal. As they blatantly manipulate the rule of law, a Scotland Yard inspector (Christopher Ecclestone) is desperately looking for a way to take them down. Meanwhile, Reggie is romancing the 16-year-old Frances (Emily Browning), much to the annoyance of her imperious mother (Tara Fitzgerald).
The tumultuous relationship between Reggie and Frances is the only thing that adds a sense of narrative momentum to the film. Otherwise, it's a series of set-pieces that take a darkly humorous approach to family clashes and criminal violence. Writer-director Brian Helgeland infuses even the grisliest brutality with an amusing smirk, which makes the movie much more engaging than expected. And Hardy storms through the film with real charisma in both roles, as the steely, magnetic Reggie and the more unstable, fearsome Ronnie. Both performances are scene-stealing, nicely conveying how these men managed to hold the entire city in their grip, even though they were only in their early 30s at the time.
Continue reading: Legend Review
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, London was at the mercy of the terrifying Kray twins (Tom Hardy). Reggie Kray was forced to spend most of his life holding back his identical twin brother, Ronnie, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. As acclaimed night club owners and feared gangsters, the two twins were seen to own London, and lived a life of glitz and glamour, as well as blood and brutality. That is, until Detective Superintendent Leonard "Nipper" Read (Christopher Eccleston) took the task of bringing two of the most powerful and dangerous criminals in the city's history to justice, by any means necessary.
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In August of 1819, The Essex set sail from New England. The whaling ship set out beyond the edges of the map to hunt in unknown waters. What the 21-man crew discovered, was far from what they could ever have imagined. A sperm whale - absolutely gigantic and hell-bent on destroying their comparatively tiny ship. While battling the demon of a sea beast, the ship was destroyed, and many of the crew were killed. As the few survivors struggled to find land and make their way back to South America, they faced a harrowing adventure, and fought insanity, storms, starvation and despair. All with the great whale fresh in their minds. The crew referred to it as Moby Dick.
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Jane Hayes has, what some might say, an unhealthy obsession with Jane Austen's novels and all things from the Regency era. She's infatuated with Mr. Darcy from 'Pride and Prejudice' - of whom she has a cardboard cut-out portrayed by Colin Firth from the 1995 Emmy winning BBC series - and has filled her bedroom with all manner of Austen-themed memorabilia. After discovering an ultimate Austen experience in England, she puts all her life savings into making the trip there, immersing herself completely in the Regency style excursion and finding her Mr. Darcy. However, it soon becomes clear that living without modern amenities is almost unthinkable and the paradise she imagined is far from bliss. Although she starts to contemplate that she may have wasted all her life savings, she does meet a potential love interest, though he may not be what she was looking for.
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Martin and Claudia are two lawyers who were formerly in a relationship. They are roped into a case together on the defense team of an alleged terrorist, following a tragic bombing in a London market one morning in November. It may be a difficult job to being with, but things don't get any easier when they covertly discover that their client was actually assigned as an undercover spy for MI5 and was supposed to lead them to the bombers before the attack. They soon begin to realise that their every move is being closely watched, and with threats on their life by some powerful people following their investigations and risky suggestions in court, they must escape the controlling force that is the government before they are eradicated - though it could be too late.
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Tim Lake is 21-years-old and not exactly what you call an expert in the art of getting girlfriends. However, all that's about to change when his father lets him in on an incredible secret the day after a shambolic New Year party; all the men in their family can travel back in time and change things that have happened in their lives. Given that he is so clumsy around beautiful women, Tim uses this to his advantage, giving himself a second chance on first impressions. He manages to woo a beautiful girl named Mary with his advances, having honed them to perfection, but little does he realise just how dangerous his actions are. When he accidentally slips up during one time warp incident, he discovers that Mary has never met him before and that several months of romance have completely vanished. He must try and win her back once again, but accept that he cannot avoid the problems life and love inevitably bring - no matter how many times he tries.
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Gary King is a 40-year-old still living in his teens and who can't wait to gather up his four friends from his teenage years to complete a pub crawl that they failed 20 years ago as kids in their hometown of Newton Haven. Unfortunately for him, his now corporate, higher-living friends are reluctant to agree though with much pressure from Gary, they eventually relent. However, things aren't exactly as they remember; the townsfolk are acting oddly and they are about to embark on a mission to rescue their childhood home from a threat of galactic proportions. But will they manage to complete their drinking quest and reach 'The World's End' pub as well as save the world from certain destruction?
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The film is almost half an hour longer than 'The Force Awakens'.
The film is expected to continue without Mendes' involvement.
Written and directed with a rakish swagger, and featuring two full-on performances from Tom Hardy,...
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, London was at the mercy of the terrifying Kray twins...
In August of 1819, The Essex set sail from New England. The whaling ship set...
Jane Hayes has, what some might say, an unhealthy obsession with Jane Austen's novels and...
Martin and Claudia are two lawyers who were formerly in a relationship. They are roped...
Gary King is a 40-year-old still living in his teens and who can't wait to...