From the very first (exhilarating) shot we get a clear sense of the genre: not a classic gangster film, but a gritty British family drama which happens to be set among outlaws. We’re also immediately introduced to Chad’s son Tyson (Georgie Smith), around whom the story also revolves, as the entire crew seems to be giving the boy his first driving lesson, frantically chasing a rabbit through a field.
Driving and animals are paramount to the film and two defining elements for Chad, who operates as the driver for Colby’s heists and shows a particular bond to animals of all kinds. This fondness for animals, and the camping site itself, lead to gorgeous shots of the countryside and its derelict sides throughout.
Influenced by his wife Kelly (Lyndsey Marshal), Chad seeks to move into a house and leave the family business. But when Colby, whose obscurantist beliefs are already a hindrance to his grandchildren’s schooling, catches wind of the plan he will do what is necessary to prevent Chad from flying the coop.
From his very first appearance, Kinnear fuels the screen with the kind of tension any crime film requires. In addition, scenes between the two actors have an energy that makes each move completely unpredictable. As performers they seem to bring the best out of each other.
Another wonderful ingredient in the film are the car chases, which (of course) played an important part in the story. The first one created a very dynamic opening shot. Later, a car stint made as a protest created a playful cop and thieves sequence. The main heist in the film also led to a very good chase with a hilarious gas station stop, and later a gripping manhunt with a few particularly memorable details. Again, the final sequence also delivers in that department, setting up a surprisingly bittersweet closure to Chad’s family story.
Due to the nature of the film, writing more about it would probably hinder the experience of watching it with too many spoilers. So I’d rather not cover more aspects and instead will conclude that though the film might have benefited from a little fine tuning regarding some of the dynamics at play and character development, this was nonetheless a highly entertaining ride with a lively score by The Chemical Brothers. And last but not least, it was beautifully shot by Eduard Grau who, after his fantastic work on 'The Gift' and 'A Single Man', is now someone I will definitely look out for.
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