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Shifty (2008)


No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0



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Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 862

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Movie Info

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

Aug 24, 2009

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All Critics (26) | Top Critics (2) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (1)

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

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.

October 18, 2012 Full Review Source:

The dialogue is a nice mix of Pinteresque menace, drug lingo, laddism and cracking one-liners.

April 28, 2009 Full Review Source: Sunday Times (UK)
Sunday Times (UK)

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.

April 28, 2009 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

Moving, gripping and funny, this is a homegrown gem you can't help taking to your heart.

April 25, 2009
Heat Magazine

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.

April 25, 2009 Full Review Source: Sky Movies
Sky Movies

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.

April 25, 2009 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Film4

Good central performances in this highly, entertaining character-driven debut.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

The production values are lo-fi but spirited performances, matey humour and an edgy authenticity carry the story.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Times [UK]
Times [UK]

First-time director Eran Creevy kicks things up a notch with this shrewd and engaging drama, achieved on the smallest of budgets.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Guardian [UK]
Guardian [UK]

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

Shifty boasts convincing performances, even-handed characterisation, creeping suspense and energy to burn.

April 24, 2009
Little White Lies

As art, Shifty is unoriginal and tedious. I find it difficult to imagine who would pay to see this for entertainment.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Daily Mail [UK]
Daily Mail [UK]

It doesn't hit home quite like it should, but director Eran Creevy deserves credit for delivering something better than the usual Brit gruel.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Daily Mirror [UK]
Daily Mirror [UK]

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Sun Online
Sun Online

It is all done with conviction, is well acted, particularly by the two leads, and is a brisk, promising debut for Creevy.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Financial Times
Financial Times

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Independent

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.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: Daily Express
Daily Express

Couched in a kind of Pinteresque slum language that needs a glossary to be totally intelligible, the film boasts an authenticity and wholly natural performances, particularly from Mays, and is devoid of the usual clichés of its genre.

April 24, 2009 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

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.
February 26, 2014

Super Reviewer

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.
October 3, 2012

Super Reviewer

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.
November 22, 2009

Super Reviewer

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.
October 11, 2009
Gordon A

Super Reviewer

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