WE STILL KILL THE OLD WAY (2014)
Directed by Sacha Bennett
Produced by Neil Jones, Adam Stephen Kelly, Rod Smith, Jonathan Sothcott
Starring Ian Ogilvy, Alison Doody, Lysette Anthony, James Cosmo
The plot is a simple one: a retired gangster returns to London from Spain to investigate the violent sadistic murder of his brother, at the hands of a local street gang.
The sales pitch for this film really caught my attention. Described as a gritty gangster movie, I hoped I was in for a treat. What I wasn’t expecting was something that was filmed in the style of an old BBC TV show. The acting is not up to par and the film itself seems like an amateur production.
After watching, I was surprised to discover this was not a directing debut. Director Sacha Bennett had directed five films prior to this, as well as being involved in the production of 8 previous TV shows or movies. As of yet I haven’t seen any of his previous work, I therefore can’t comment as to whether I think his quality of work has improved or not.
We Still Kill The Old Way is very straightforward. A gang of youths is terrorising a neighbourhood in London, they kill the brother of a former gangster, and he returns to wreak revenge with his old crew. A simple set up, easily presented.
Where I have issue is with the quality of work provided. The whole thing seems like a pilot for a UK TV show and seems filmed in a standard British way. There are some recognisable faces here, Ian Ogilvy who played the role of Simon Templar in The Saint following Roger Moore’s departure. Christopher Ellison who would be well known to British audiences for his long term role in TV series The Bill and Beaver Falls and actress Alison Doody all have much screen time.
As a whole, We Still Kill The Old Way fails to deliver. The idea of old school battling new school can be intriguing, if well applied, sadly, there’s no big catch to grab attention and create a reason to watch. Where there could be plot twists, we end up with predictability. Comedic moments miss the mark too.
A good attempt to sell below average filmmaking and acting skills is how I think of this film. Sadly, it’s not a movie I would recommend to anyone.
Gary Dugdale lives in Newcastle, UK and can be found on Twitter @Gary_Dugdale