The Gentlemen Had Highs And Lows… But Mostly Highs

img_8985In our household, we do not pass up the chance to see a Guy Ritchie film.  Mark and I are both fans of his directorial style, so of course The Gentlemen ended up on our watch-list.  And it’s been so long since we’ve had a date night at the movies that this was a great way to get us back to the theatre.

From my experience, Guy Ritchie films tend to have a number of similarities between the camera work, editing, directorial style, and just about all other aspects.  So if you’re going to see one of his movies, chances are you know what to expect before you even arrive in the theatre.  (Unlike one poor theatre goer that night who clearly was not expecting such foul language out of a film that starred Matthew McConaughey). The Gentlemen was no exception; the plot, style, and characters are all typical of a Guy Ritchie film, so there was really nothing too surprising.  However, I felt that this was the kind of film that would have lent itself well to a plot twist.

There was a minor twist: the film opens with a scene from later on in the story, and when we reach that scene it becomes apparent that things did not turn out the way we were led to believe.  But the structure of the story could have supported a major plot twist fairly well, and we just never got that kind of a twist.  It is apparent early on that Fletcher (Hugh Grant) is an unreliable narrator as he recounts the tale of Mickey Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) and his fellow cohorts in the illegal marijuana business.  He embellishes, he fishes for information he does not have, and withholds information that he does have.  I feel like that would have been the perfect set up for a grand plot twist.  So, although I enjoyed the story overall, I was a tad disappointed.

On the topic of Hugh Grant, his performance as Fletcher was fantastic!  My top three actors were Grant, Colin Farrell as Coach, and Michelle Dockery as Rosalind Pearson.  They really stole the show for me. In a film like this, the characters are more like caricatures, and these three really delivered a phenomenal performance of their caricatures. In fact, I was so enamored with Grant’s performance that I found Charlie Hunnam’s portrayal of Ray underwhelming.  However, when Ray visits the junkies a little over half way through the film, that was when Hunnam really started to shine.  And although his performance never quite measured up to Grant’s, with whom he shared many scenes, from that point on I felt as if he was at least no longer fading into the background.

All in all, this was a fun, typical Guy Ritchie film.  It delivered everything I was expecting, and I had a great time.  I could not ask for more.  This may have even been one of the more memorable Ritchie film for me (although I still think that Rock n Rolla is my favourite).  I would definitely watch The Gentlemen again.

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