Reviewed by: Bryan Truong
|Featuring:||Brad Pitt, Dennis Farina, Jason Statham, Jason Flemyng, Benicio Del Toro|
|Producer:||Guy Ritchie, Matthew Vaughn|
“Snatch” is the latest gritty crime caper film full of action, drama, and comedy from British film-maker Guy Ritchie. From a moral standpoint, there honestly isn’t anything particularly redeeming about this movie. The violence is graphic and gruesome, the language is almost always explicit, and the humor is often low-brow. There is some female nudity during a violent confrontation in a topless bar for a few seconds. Some of the characters delight in violence while the rest would rather not use any unless they felt it was absolutely necessary. About the only decent thing a character does in this film is apologize to another character for a death in the family and saying “God bless her.”
Franky Four Fingers (Del Toro) is a Jewish thief who steals an 84 karat diamond. Cousin Avi (Farina) is a Jewish-American businessman who wants it. Boris the Blade, or Boris the Bullet Dodger (Serbedzija) is a Russian gun dealer who wants to steal the diamond for his brother. Turkish (Statham) and Tommy (Graham) are illegal boxing promoters who get into trouble because of rogue Irish gypsy bare-knuckle boxer Mickey O’Neil (Pitt). Those three end up owing the ruthless Bricktop (Ford) big time, a vicious old man who fixes illegal fights. Bullet Tooth Tony is a big guy hired to track down the diamond’s wandering where-abouts. And then, there’s this crazy gypsy dog! All of these guys end up running into each other at one point or another, making things a huge mess. Hopefully, this plot summary can be followed despite an extremely complex story.
In regards to the artistic value of the film, I wanted to give “Snatch” a higher rating than I did. The direction is tight as the film moves at an interesting, steady pace. Ritchie knows when to lay back and show restraint and also when to energize the film by using crazy, stylish visuals whenever tedium threatened. The cast is extremely talented and overall delivers solid performances, despite some minor over-acting and Del Toro’s questionable Jewish accent. Brad Pitt’s performance stands out the most, especially with his entertainingly semi-comprehenisible Irish gypsy accent. The script impressively handles a complicated plot full of intricate details of how the actions of each character somehow affect everyone else in the story. The dialogue is very Tarrantino-esque in nature—clever, intelligent, humorous, but also loaded with slang and curse words. And watching the gypsy dog steal scenes is priceless.
My main problem with the film artistically is its obvious awareness of its own hipness and cleverness. Guy Ritchie just goes out of his way to prove to the audience how cool and slick his film is supposed to be, and I found this to be very distracting, making the movie less charming and engaging.
Still, “Snatch” is a pretty good movie with its own unique feel and distinctive look and style. If you don’t mind trendy criminal films that reek of hipness and drenched in curse words (Kids-in-Mind reports about 145 F-words and several religious profanities) and violence (“gruesome” according to Preview), then you’ll find “Snatch” to be an entertaining experience. However, please consider the heavy objectionable material before making your final decision.