Dead Man's Shoes (18)

Film

Thrillers

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Time Out says

With his autistic brother at his shoulder, accompanied by the wistful strum of Smog’s ‘Vessel in Vain’ and cine-cam childhood memories, Paddy Considine’s grizzly wayfarer wends his way down fields and country lanes in the preamble to Meadows’ latest rummage through English small-time masculine values; the pastoral tranquility barely ruffled by the steady purpose of his stride. It’s a nonchalant image that only retrospectively conjures the ghosts of Harry Dean Stanton emerging from the desert in ‘Paris, Texas’, Clint riding into town in ‘High Plains Drifter’, or even the homecomings of Hamlet or Richard Lionheart… Something is rotten in a Midlands village, though from initial appearances it runs no deeper than the petty drug-dealing, porn and Pot Noodles that characterise the lives of local goons Herbie, Soz, Tuff and Sonny. Considine busts their chops, steals their stash and daubs taunts on their walls before they have time to figure out who he could be; even when they do, they don’t realise quite how scared they should be.

A gritted antithesis to ‘Once Upon a Time in the Midlands’, Meadows’ and co-writer Considine’s stripped-down revenge drama similarly transposes western archetypes to the modest back-cloth of their local manor, but to much more serious intent: male fecklessness is viewed through a far darker lens, and redemption is in short supply. It’s a fascinating project, in terms of both its technique and ambition, and gloriously watchable: working with a young cinematographer (Danny Cohen) and a triumvirate of editors, Meadows has raised his visual craft to the level of his dexterity with actors, while Considine is as striking as lightning. Where the film stumbles is at the behavioural level; at least the hoodlums are the soul of shallowness, and the denouement makes a sudden leap of brutality. But better that than pat.

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Release details

Rated:

18

UK release:

Fri Oct 1, 2004

Duration:

86 mins

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LiveReviews|11
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Chloe

A fantastic film with a heart wrenching story line. Presents a gritty reality in not such a realistic world yet a fantastic performance from all makes it a must watch movie!

Chloe

A fantastic film with a heart wrenching story line. Presents a gritty reality in not such a realistic world yet a fantastic performance from all makes it a must watch movie!

Russell Jones

Probably the best film I have ever seen. Passed on the good word and everybody loves this film. Its a gem and must be one of the must see films before you die.

Russell Jones

Probably the best film I have ever seen. Passed on the good word and everybody loves this film. Its a gem and must be one of the must see films before you die.

jools

Simply one of the best films ever, deeply tragic and funny and real. Paddy Considine is electrifying and the morally degenerate, small-town gangsters are horrifically believable. Its a criminal shame that Shane Meandows has now sold his soul to the devil - or rather Eurostar - if that last excuse for a film is anything to go by.

jools

Simply one of the best films ever, deeply tragic and funny and real. Paddy Considine is electrifying and the morally degenerate, small-town gangsters are horrifically believable. Its a criminal shame that Shane Meandows has now sold his soul to the devil - or rather Eurostar - if that last excuse for a film is anything to go by.

blib

Sorry this is dire. A pathetic attempt at the brilliant "Get Carter" Don't remember any "comedy" other than the 2CV the almighty drugs Lord Sonny drives about in. The dialogue sucks. We don't tend to say "man" as in "Yeah man, sweet man, cool man know what a mean man, man, man, fuck man" You get my point. The twist isn't surprising at all as it tells you on the back of the bloody DVD box and as for the "go on stab me" just doesn't work. It isn't a fascinating project. It is a depressing pile of not very well done shite.

Nicola

Shane Meadows is my favourte director, if you have not seen this film you should. The dialog is perfect, very realistic for the north and i feel astho i know all the characters personally.the comedy is well timed and the twist is surprising.Considine is cast superbly, just as he is in 'A Room for Romeo Brass'. brilliant, must see film.

Nicola

Shane Meadows is my favourte director, if you have not seen this film you should. The dialog is perfect, very realistic for the north and i feel astho i know all the characters personally.the comedy is well timed and the twist is surprising.Considine is cast superbly, just as he is in 'A Room for Romeo Brass'. brilliant, must see film.