Wednesday, 8 September 2010



In which a trio of despicable pieces of foul-mouthed drug dealer scum get bloodily shotgunned to death in a Range Rover somewhere in the wintry wilds of Essex. Hurrah. Job well done. No sympathy for them whatsoever. Couldn't have happened to a more deserving bunch of tossers. If this movie doesn't provide anything else (and believe me, it doesn't), it at the very least shows three worthless individuals being brutally murdered.

This is actually the third time the infamous Rettendon Range Rover murders have been committed to film, and I really feel it's time to let it go. How many more British hardman gangster movies do we need? I know that if they stop making them then Danny Dyer's going to have to get a proper job (incredibly, he's not actually in this one) but is there any more mileage in the endless thuggery, misogyny and Olympic-standard profanity? For all its technical sheen, Bonded By Blood is a thoroughly unedifying and dispiriting afternoon at the cinema and while it's not the very worst, it's pretty near the bottom of the pile. Drugs, guns, wife-beating, casual violence, more drugs, everybody yelling the C-word at one another..... Is this really what constitutes a decent night out? Have we nothing better, nothing more innovative, nothing more exciting, to make a dozen films a year about?

There seems to be some kind of love out there for this genre, and I genuinely don't get it - what it is about these characters that people (ie filmmakers) appear to find so attractive? Seriously: why are we supposed to give a damn? Especially when the makers double back on themselves - after having told the story of how the first trio of scumbags was killed by the second trio of scumbags, the end captions suggest that there's an increasing body of opinion that says they didn't actually do it. That the movie is marginally better to look at than the first dramatisation, Essex Boys, and is pretty much on the same level as the second, Rise Of The Footsoldier, is hardly any kind of recommendation. Rubbish.


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