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Shooters
cast: Adrian Dunbar, Andrew Howard, Louis Dempsey, Matthew Rhys, Emma Fielding

directors: Colin Teague, Glenn Durfort

96 minutes (18) 2000
Universal VHS rental

RATING: 4/10
reviewed by Peter Schilling
There's much hysterical ultra-violence, psychopathic behaviour and snivelling disdain in Shooters. Without success, its two directors endeavour to marry the menacing underworld traditions of Get Carter, The Long Good Friday and The Krays with grimly unrelenting sleaze and even more starkly nihilistic concerns.
   Gilly (Louis Dempsey) is fresh out of prison. His old pal J (Andrew Howard) draws him into collecting money for crime boss, Max (Adrian Dunbar), while prepping his own scam to trade drugs for machine guns. Mistrust and betrayal follows everyone around in this post-Trainspotting drama where all the kids are hooked on dope, and a nail-gun pins the uncooperative dealer's hand to a table.
   Despite fashionable Glock automatics, high-tax bracket furnishings, omniscient police surveillance, and a cop (Emma Fielding) who manages to be less honest than a Soho pickpocket, this millennial gangland milieu is as glamorous as facial gangrene.
   Pragmatism and authenticity are top-of-the-list prerequisites for any socially aware crime film. Unfortunately, the cumulative effect of having unsympathetic thugs pursuing the lowest of aspirations - by doing their worst unto others, and getting away with it - against an uncompromisingly bleak urban backdrop is quite simply repellent, and never reveals anything approaching strength of character. If you want a good British gangster thriller, see the excellent Sexy Beast or Face, or even the flawed Gangster No.1, but don't expect to get the same emotional charge from this dreary meat-grinder of a movie.
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