The movie is the ultimate Confidence Game, To hide the principles of the SUPEREGO, EGO, ID, SIN and GOD within a gangster movie. For those in a 12 step fellowship the principles are quite obvious when you look for them.
The narrative of each character is the EGO / SUPEREGO of each character. "God remove our character defects." The principle that our defects accomplish two things, one they destroy us, and out of that destruction they bring us closer to god.
GOD / Sam Gold therefore needs sin to draw us closer to him. The stolen powder represents sin that gold uses to call us closer to him. The concept being that as both the Asian and the Italian live in their super egos chasing gold, they are parallel. It is universal. They kill, lie, cheat and steal for this ultimate falsehood, The superego, rather then the unemotional id.
As the movie progresses, the two characters, the ultimate con man and chess man stop him from acting out in his super ego. Inside the super ego exists the emotion of fear of the elevator, the anger and rage for worldly things. Indeed these two characters are the main characters ID.
In the scene where Sam Gold's representatives are introduced. They are all female. This harkens to the bible. "What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder." God's representative sometimes has the power to lead the lost to him. A sinful man, acting out in his super ego, the woman says, "It is either me and church or the life you are living, you cannot have both."
"Wake up Mr. Green." "How do you keep winning?" How does the super ego lead the ID of people to ruin and God? Very simple The ID does all the hard work, the superego just helps you along. The art is for the superego to feed pieces to the id and make the id believe it took those pieces 'cause the is smarter and the superego is dumber. In every game and con (confidence) there is always and opponent and there is always a victim. The more control the victim (id) thinks he has the less control he actually has. Gradually, he (the person living in superego) will hang himself. I as the opponent (superego) just help him along. So is that the treasured formula? The formula has infinite depth in its efficacy and application, but it is staggeringly simple and completely consistent.
The 1st Rule of any game or con (confidence) you an only get smarter by playing a smarter opponent. (This is foreshadowing. The smarter opponent is ones super ego and ID parallel. The 4th step through the 8th step is an attempt to play this smarter opponent.)
Rule number two, The more sophisticated the game, the more sophisticated the opponent. If the opponent is very good, he will place his victim inside an environment he can control. The bigger the environment, the easier the control. He'll toss the dog a bone, find their weakness give them just a little of what they think they want. So the opponent simply distracts their victim by getting them consumed with their own consumption.
(This is a HUGE, worldwide concept. The more the super ego consumes and controls, the bigger environment they create to control the id. The new car, new home, the next bigger thing, the super ego nudges them along with consumption. This first happened in the garden of EDEN with a serpent (snake). The snake conned Eve. )
The word "snake" springs to mind.
Don't knock it. You only get smarter by playing a snake. (This is step 10. Step Ten. "Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.")
The bigger the trick and older the trick, the easier it is to pull. Based on two principles: 1. They think it can't be that old 2. They think it can't be that big for so many people to have fallen for it. ( 1. The trick dates to the garden of EDEN. 2. Most of mankind has fallen for it.)(I was always trying to judge my insides by other peoples outsides. EGO = Easing God Out)(3rd step prayer used as start of combat against the ego," God, I offer myself to Thee To build with me & to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy love & Thy way of life.")
Eventually when the opponent (superego) is challenged or questioned. It means the victims investment and thus his intelligence, is questioned. No one can accept that not even to themselves.
Checkmate. I ain't playing you again. You will always find a good opponent in the very last place you would ever look.
You got more tricks then a clowns pocket, don't you Mr. Green? (The Id calling out the serpent superego.)
They're the last resort. God will not touch the ID. No one lives and this pleases GOD. No one sees Gold but God sees everything. (The ID is God. God guided. The two fictional ID characters did not shoot anyone. This is a turning point. The super ego refused to kill over the money. Mr. Green listened to the quiet voice. The ID, he sent Ted from the room. Mr. Green went to kill his conscious / ID, the gun was empty. The ID then says, Wake up Mr. Green. Your past the third day and have risen. God guided.)
I think this makes the point. If you were Roger Ebert like. If you dig easy to grasp movies, there are lots of them. However, If you enjoy a movie that gives more and more and more with each viewing and understanding these concepts I have described? This is one of the greatest movies ever.
We are not granted a cure of our disease.
"It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God's will into all of our activities. "How can I best serve Thee - Thy will (not mine) be done." These are thoughts which must go with us constantly. We can exercise our will power along this line all we wish. It is the proper use of the will." Big Book.
Til midnight, repeat process.
Revolver blew them all away. Revolver is beyond without comparison the deepest movie I've ever seen. It is all about exploring what Freud called the "id" aka the reptilian brain aka instinct. It explores the nature of fear, pain, rage, compassion and trust and teaches us how important it is to allow the right aspects of your "id" to dominate your self to find inner balance and happiness.
Unfortunately Ritchie goes way over most people's heads with that message, which is why it doesn't get nearly the attention it deserves. I know it's a cliché and I'm going to get butchered for this, but those who call this movie a pretentious mess are either not intelligent enough to get it or not mature enough to understand the depth and beauty of it.
Technically, this movie was perfect as well. The pacing perfectly accompanied the message of the movie as it gradually unfolded. Repeating themes help the viewer organize his thoughts as the message gets clearer and our understanding of the meaning of these themes becomes richer and more powerful.
While not as rich as Mr Nobody or Cashback from a purely audiovisual perspective, the audiovisual appeal was nevertheless very strong and formed a perfect whole with the message and pacing.
Casting and acting were no less excellent. Each character perfectly filled the role they played. No one felt out of place and Statham was a much better actor than I ever thought he could be.
This is a movie you should see at least twice. Once you really "get" the story, a second viewing makes it a whole new experience that's no less worth watching. But that's only if you get it. Most people just don't get it and won't ever get it...