A and A's Movie A Day

Watching movies until we run out.

Movie 346 – Snatch.

Snatch. – February 9th, 2011

Perhaps tonight was not the best night to watch this movie. Not that I didn’t enjoy it, but reviewing it feels monumentally difficult when one is nursing a headache. It’s full of twists and turns and a large cast of characters who are all involved with each other in different ways and it’s a wee bit convoluted and yeah. A headache? Does not help. I watched it. I enjoyed it. I will review it. But I will not attempt to recap the plot. Or plots. Or plots that are actually a single plot. I will most assuredly forget characters and moments because the movie bops between points and people like a flea in a kennel.

The movie’s stories center around a diamond and a boxing match (or really, a series of boxing matches, but boxing is key here). Ostensibly our main characters are Turkish and Tommy, two managers for boxers who participate in illegal fights. And in their efforts to get into the scene and make a bit of money off of it, they end up involved in way way more than they ever wanted to be. Because the guy they have to deal with, Brick Top, is a sociopath who has folks who’ve run afoul of him chopped up and fed to his pigs. And Brick Top is in a foul mood because the bookie office he runs was hit by a trio of totally inept thieves who really run a pawn store. They were hired to do something so foolish by a gangster who wanted to get a hold of a gigantic diamond, which was in the custody of a thief with a gambling problem, who was supposed to be at the bookie’s. And I haven’t even touched on the bit with the dog and the Irish Travelers and the variety of hit men, thugs and cons going on.

There’s a whole subplot with Turkish and Tommy needing a caravan and then needing a fighter after their man was knocked out during a deal for said caravan. Which involves Turkish and Tommy with Mickey, who is one sly bastard. And since Mickey won’t play along with Brick Top’s plans, things go bad very quickly. And eventually, with a lot of swearing and violence, the two plots converge and people die and people get threatened and bodies are stuffed in car boots and stupidity runs rampant and the diamond changes hands a bunch of times and everyone’s after it except Turkish and Tommy, since they don’t know about it and just want to get through the planned fight without getting killed and fed to the pigs.

Really, Turkish and Tommy could have avoided a whole lot of fuss if Tommy had just flat out bought a decent caravan in the first place instead of trying to make a deal with Mickey. And the diamond plot, well. Okay, there was no avoiding the diamond plot. Everyone involved in it is greedy and either dangerous or foolish, which is a rotten combination for all. But Turkish is our narrator. He’s the one telling the story. So it feels a little odd that his part in it all is almost a bystander role. I mean, sure, he’s the one who tried to deal with Brick Top in the first place, but he’s not the one who lost their fighter, which was the catalyst for that whole plot. What does he have to do with the pawn shop guys? Or the diamond thief and his contacts? Absolutely nothing (well, at least not for the vast majority of the movie). He’s an odd narrator, and I can only assume he’s got the role because he’s one of the few sympathetic characters in the movie. Though to be honest, it could have been really interesting to have the movie narrated by one of the sociopathic killers. Turkish isn’t a sociopath. He’s just looking to make money and hopefully not die.

Really though, while I enjoyed a lot of the movie, I did find myself wondering who I was supposed to actually like. Tommy’s a bit of a tool. Mickey’s fun, in a ruthless sort of way, but he’s also screwing with everyone around him. Brick Top, Rosebud, Bullet Tooth, Franky, Boris? They’re all ruthless murderers who’d as soon as kill you as look at you. The pawn shop guys? Vinny, Sol and Tyrone? They seem like nice enough guys, especially in comparison to the other crew I mentioned, but you can’t help but headdesk at how clueless and out of their depth they are. And it’s obvious from the start that they’re headed for trouble. Which leaves the diamond sellers, who are also a bunch of cold and ruthless guys, but they hire other cold and ruthless guys to do the dirty work. And that leaves Turkish. It’s tough to get invested in him, even if I like him fine. There’s just not much to get invested in. Why should I care if he survives? Just because he’s not a vicious murderer? Eh.

But really, I did enjoy the movie. It moved all over the place and at a good clip, but that’s the style of it, so I think it worked. There were a lot of characters and plot points to keep track of, but the performances were great fun and the writing was snappy. It all does come together, which is impressive. Every single actor in this movie sold their parts to me. I don’t know if I could pick any one out, aside from Brad Pitt as Mickey, because they all really got into their parts and played well off of each other. It has flaws, but I enjoyed it anyhow.

February 9, 2011 - Posted by | daily reviews | , , , ,

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