Thursday, 13 November 2014



There's a secret to con-artist crime capers, and indeed most movies designed primarily as entertainment, and it's a secret which has entirely eluded the makers of this cataclysmically witless piece of boneheaded garbage. It's a very simple idea: don't make your characters into hateful dicks. Don't write your leads as crass, amoral, laddish oafs that even the most imbecilic Nuts reader won't want to spend time with. Don't give them a leering, barely Neanderthal approach to women and a clear conscience when it comes to stealing and ripping people off. Julian Gilbey's wretched, piss-pathetic apology for a teenage episode of Hustle offers us four swaggering, despicable bellends, all of whom you'd quite happily push under a combine harvester. They're the heroes of the piece, but against their apparently hilarious antics the bloodier and more serious muscle of grown-up criminals is actually more palatable. Our principal hero is Ed Speleers, star of the atrocious Love Bite and it's honestly a tough call as to whether that's a more shameful piece of rubbish.

Plastic has our scumbag foursome running a string of credit card frauds and identity thefts, amassing a stack of cloned cards and quickly purchased goods to sell on for untraceable cash. But they fall foul of a serious gangster (Thomas Kretschmann) who gives them two weeks to pay him two million pounds or they can dig their own graves. With the aid of the sort-of-almost girlfriend of the group's leader, they all jet off to Florida to swindle some big-time millionaires - except they're so monumentally idiotic they blow their own scheme and end up constructing an entirely new con job which involves swiping a case of diamonds by pretending to be a Brunei prince. Can they get the money together, or might some of the group be plotting to take it all for themselves?

Whatever. I just spent most of the running time hoping the smug little sods would die very horribly and I hated the fact that they won in the end - it's "based on a true story" and "the diamonds were never recovered", if you believe the opening and closing captions. Justice, even movie justice, is barely served in a film in which one of the group gets clean away with the loot and two of them get absurdly lenient jail terms. Thoroughly depressing, artistically empty and full of more obnoxious and morally repugnant bastards than any film since Downfall, it's probably the worst film of 2014 and certainly the one I most regret adding to my rental list.


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