If you know me, you know that if Morrissey mentions something, even in passing, I’ll most likely look it up. That’s what happened with The Long Good Friday. This is the statement in which our boy Mozza drops a mention of the film in question if you are interested… http://true-to-you.net/morrissey_news_071203_02
At any rate, I had actually heard of the film through BBC America. From time to time they show an edited version. I absolutely LOVE this movie. It is a masterful piece of film making, and is equal parts British gangster movie, artistic film exploration and discussion of England on the cusp of the 1980s.
This 1979 film is set over about 36 hours from the morning of Good Friday until the following evening. Bob Hoskins creates a masterpiece of his role as a London racketeer who witnesses his firm falling down around him. It is his intention to keep it together at any cost. Hellen Mirren plays his wife. She is brilliant as well.
Hoskins plays the London small time gangster made big…the last of the famous international playboys, one might say. Truly, the romance of crime is laced in this film, but it goes far beyond that. The East London // South London crime syndicates are featured. Hoskins delivers a wit and charm that simply SHOULD NOT be there. His character should not have the appeal that he does. It’s wonderful. In addition, the film is gripping from the outset, as the rather complex story unfolds in such a manner that the viewer is only half a step ahead of Hoskin’s character. It is quite fascinating. I’ve never seen pacing used so effectively in a film. I must say, however, as an American, the American accents of the two New York gangsters are hilarious. The one sounds straight up Canadian, and the other is half John Wayne, half Frank Sinatra. It’s pretty hilarious.
The social and political realities of a changing Britian are a subtext to this film making it so much more than it could have been. Masterful film making and superb acting do the rest. Go see this film. It’s brilliant.