Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
No Top Critics Tomatometer score yet...
Inspired by writer/director Eran Creevy's own teenage experiences, Shifty tells the tale of a man who returns to his old neighborhood on the outskirts of London, ostensibly to attend a party but more specifically to check up on an old friend. It's been a long time since Chris (Daniel Mays) left town, and now that he's finally returned, he's eager to check up on Shifty (Riz Ahmed), the lifelong friend he left behind. As it turns out, things aren't going to well for Shifty; not only has he taken to dealing drugs supplied by local heavy Glen (Jason Flemyng), but the constant struggle to keep his activates secret from his self-righteous brother Rez (Nitin Ganatra) has resulted in some serious family tensions. Over the course of the next twenty-four hours, former best friends Chris and Shifty will not only confront the dark secrets that once drove Chris from town, but also work to free the desperate Shifty from a volatile situation that could spell danger for both of them. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi … More
No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.Login
Critic Reviews for Shifty
Creevy's fine ear for dialogue, sensitive and productive direction of actors and confident control of tone is all the more impressive for being delivered under the short schedule and tight budgetary exigencies.
Shifty is low-key, low budget, but high grade. It's a film about sitting and talking. And drug dealing. It builds slowly - some may want more action, but it has a surprisingly satisfying conclusion.
The dialogue is a nice mix of Pinteresque menace, drug lingo, laddism and cracking one-liners.
The film has a sense of authenticity and there's no sentimental suggestion that Shifty's way of life is the inevitable result of his background.
Moving, gripping and funny, this is a homegrown gem you can't help taking to your heart.
For a debut feature, Eran Creevy's semi-autobiographical drama shows a remarkably light touch, set in an anonymous London suburbia far removed from stereotypical East End of the wideboy film tradition.
Mercifully free of Danny Dyer cameos or Guy Ritchie mockneyisms, this works as both an entertaining gangster thriller and a hard-hitting piece of social realism. Absorbing, moving and authentic, Shifty never once strikes a false note.
Creevy eschews the woozy, arthouse ambience of Duane Hopkins' Better Things - another portrait of a drug-decimated community - for naturalistic dialogue and performances within carefully framed and composed shots; properly cinematic, grown-up direction.
Good central performances in this highly, entertaining character-driven debut.
The production values are lo-fi but spirited performances, matey humour and an edgy authenticity carry the story.
First-time director Eran Creevy kicks things up a notch with this shrewd and engaging drama, achieved on the smallest of budgets.
Written and directed by first-timer Eran Creevy, this quiet piece is mostly convincing in its mundane details, and doesn't feel the need to ramp up its plot too precipitately into guns and threats and spiralling vendetta.
Shifty boasts convincing performances, even-handed characterisation, creeping suspense and energy to burn.
As art, Shifty is unoriginal and tedious. I find it difficult to imagine who would pay to see this for entertainment.
It doesn't hit home quite like it should, but director Eran Creevy deserves credit for delivering something better than the usual Brit gruel.
First-time writer and director Eran Creevy delivers a film full of uneasy silences, punctuated by laddish banter and just enough action to keep you gripped.
It is all done with conviction, is well acted, particularly by the two leads, and is a brisk, promising debut for Creevy.
Drug crime on the outskirts of London sounds neither promising nor original, but Eran Creevy's debut feature is more character study than the usual Britcrim parade of guns and geezers.
The story may not be entirely unfamiliar but writer/director Eran Creevy transforms autobiographical material into an engaging, energetic little drama that is full of promise.
Audience Reviews for Shifty
Shifty isn't a masterpiece but I think for a little small budget British film it deserves praise. It stars Cinephile Crocodile favorites Riz Ahmed and Daniel Mays as drug dealer and ex-drug dealer consecutively. The film is basically one long conversation between the two, comedy and drama happen along the way, sometimes successfully, sometimes not so much but the script is always spot on. It is a balance of originality and cliche but I would forgive some of the more expected aspects of the film for the scenes of genuine quality and tenderness. Not perfect but a fine debut by anyone's standards.More
A well written, day in the life of, which is different to other drug films. It involves you from the start and there's a lot of guessing going on right until the end. Highly recommended to fans of British film.More
Not so much a story in a traditional sense, more of a ?day in the life of? type of tale and in this case it?s through a drug dealer?s eyes. Whilst this is true in terms of storyline build up, perhaps the true meaning of the film is about relationships of all kind, family, friendships, the loyalties that come from them, right to the non-stereotypical drug users and their relationship with drugs.
Well acted, very realistic, but as a result suffers a slightly slow paced urban thriller. Regardless, it?s a worthy British Drama and well made for what appears to be a very low budget film. A particularly good performance from Riz Ahmed.
Effective calling card for a new talent in director Creevy, his personal experiences lend authenticity to the script, and a smart sense of humour stops this descending into grim geezerdom.More
Discuss Shifty on our Movie forum!