Critical reaction to the film has been mixed. While the film's unoriginal themes were criticised, the script and direction, as well as the performances of Strong, Butler and Kebbell, were praised. IGN gave the film a positive review with four out of five stars, saying "Guy Ritchie is hardly re-inventing the wheel with this movie, but RocknRolla is nonetheless a comedy thriller that is every bit as accomplished as his early work, and without doubt a witty, adrenalin-fuelled blast from start to finish." Roger Ebert gave the film three stars, stating that "It never slows down enough to be really good, and never speeds up enough to be the Bourne Mortgage Crisis, but there's one thing for sure: British actors love playing gangsters as much as American actors love playing cowboys, and it's always nice to see people having fun."
Guy Ritchie´s gangster formula is intact in "RocknRolla" and a it is simply a third act after "Lock Stock and two Smokin' Barrels" and "Snatch" with the same fast paced and witty dialogue, great soundtrack, a stylistic violent and complex plot structure filled with Cockney gangster stereotypes and rapid dynamic editing. Yes, it might feel that you have seen it before, but Ritchie still manages to keep his direction, story and colourful character gallery in a "newer" shape and form so you are still truly entertained. The ensemble is hardly something you can complain about with Tom Wilkinson, Mark Strong, Gerard Butler, Idris Elba, Tom Hardy, Thandie Newton etc. They all work perfectly in their roles and with a classic Ritchie ensemble storyline they all get to shine in one way or another. Thandie Newton has never been more gorgeous and I love the scene when Stella and One-Two dance together with Flash and The Pan´s magnificent song "Waiting For A Train" playing in the background. Great scene. Excellent use of Lou Reed´s solid song "The Gun" as well."RocknRolla" is a great in my eyes and fans of "Lock Stock and two Smokin' Barrels" and "Snatch" will love this one as well.
Trivia: Thandie Newton revealed that Ritchie stated that he hopes to extend RocknRolla into a trilogy, in the event that the film receives enough positive attention. At the end of the film there is a title card stating "Johnny, Archy and the Wild Bunch will be back in The Real RocknRolla". According to both the audio commentary and an interview with Ritchie, the second film has been written and is awaiting studio approval. In a 2011 interview, promoting Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, when asked about a possible RocknRolla sequel, Ritchie said "You know, I've spent a lot of time thinking about it! I've written a script, I think it's a great script, and Joel (Silver) wants to pay for me to do it. But up until now we haven't had the time to do it. It's sitting there and we'd all like to do it, it's just a question of when we're going to fit it in. So we'll wait and see." He also mentioned that as long as Warner Bros. keeps throwing him "big movies like the Sherlock Holmes films and The Man from UNCLE, then it may not be happening soon."
The acting wasn't a problem here. They were all played extremely well and thats the reason I finished the movie. with a cast like that, you can't turn it off. However, the storyline just fell short. It starts off well, where you think there's a high hope it's going to be a great mobster movie, but it ends up taking you in circles and then falling flat on its face at the very end. Literally, the entire story is repetitive ans the ending is the last thing I'd ever have wanted. The Johnny Quid character was truly one of those characters you just can't stand. He pretty much ruined it for me.
Guy Ritchie is a man who has established a distinctive brand of English cinema. His fast-paced music video style boasts visual glory while his preferred narrative is an intense and funny blend of crime and comedy. This is exactly the style of filmmaking he returns to in RocknRolla after finding little success with either Swept Away (2002) or Revolver (2005). While RocknRolla is a return to form for the director, it is also a return to formula because the man fails to break much new ground with this film. Having established his talents with the release of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998) before taking his stylistic ambitions to the max with Snatch (2000), RocknRolla takes a step back into the exact same territory. RocknRolla carries many of the same faults as his earlier films, but the better aspects of the production fail to stand out all that much since they have all been seen before and so the impact is rather minimal. It's refreshing to see the director doing what he does best and doing it with an all new cast, but it's all been done before and there is little to hide that whatsoever.
RocknRolla borrows heavily from Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. It's a caper packed with a few too many characters to keep up with and a pace which moves at a rate too fast for any actual character development to take place. The script doesn't concern itself with this; it just makes an attempt to turn its characters into entertaining archetypes through the use of dialogue. The language is rich due to its high volume of gritty slang and humour, but it never really matters which character is saying it because the convoluted narrative rushes through them all without ever really asserting individual value for any of them. The lasting value of each character on the narrative varies, but since they are all given the same scattered treatment it really doesn't matter in the end because it's little more than a confusing spectacle of acting without any actual narrative purpose for it.
It's almost as if RocknRolla is the conclusion to a trilogy of films composed of this, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch. Unfortunately, this time the affair feels tiresome. By the end of the film I have little sense what happened, but this time around it felt like more of a chore to sit through the experience so I really didn't care. I enjoyed the energy in the film and the overall style, but the story was just not one I cared about. Eventually I had to embrace that I had little to care about and tried to find virtue in other aspects of the feature. It wasn't necessarily enough to have me calling this a good film, but it does serve as a reminder of Guy Ritchie's music video style of filmmaking. With the stylish cinematography and enjoyable colour scheme to the film being served through a series of manic quick-cuts against the backdrop of an intense soundtrack, RocknRolla is an energetic if overwhelming experience. And though characters are not a strong point of RocknRolla, the type of character Guy Ritchie is effective at coming up with is always interesting to see played by a variety of actors. With RocknRolla presenting many notorious faces to the style, the most entertaining aspect of the film is arguably the performances.
Tom Wilkinson is the standout of RocknRolla. Amid the manic blend of crime and comedy in the film, Tom Wilkinson is the one actor who takes everything completely serious with maximum intensity. He sinks his teeth into the power obsession of his character and grasps it with a tenacious passion, speaking every word with a swift pace of fearless confidence which allows him to command the more reluctant or confused characters around him. Tom Wilkinson leads RocknRolla with a powerful passion for the material and proves to bring out some sophisticated power in the material that Guy Ritchie presents him with.
Gerard Butler also delivers an intense effort. A widely recognized name in Hollywood, Gerard Butler is an actor who has a talent for really commanding a performance with a gritty edge to him if he is given the right one. While RocknRolla is inconsistent in its purposes for using him, the actor manages to use his natural charm in the calmer scenes while bringing out more tension in the others. He does this all while not having to disguise his native accent which has got to be refreshing for the actor. RocknRolla presents Gerard Butler in his natural form as both a talented actor and a Scotsman, and he captures the edge of the film with instinct.
Tom Hardy is also a brilliant presence. The man is currently one of the biggest stars in the world of cinema, and so seeing him working in his cultural roots within the confines of a Guy Ritchie film is a treat for everyone. Many of his scenes come with a humourous element to them which stand out from the rest of the material, and it makes his presence all the more memorable The same goes for Idris Elba whose rich sophistication comes to him naturally enough in any film lucky enough to benefit from his presence.
Mark Strong's suave line delivery and reputation for delivering intense performances makes him another befitting addition to the cast as well as an effective narrator. And last of all, Jeremy Piven is a grand presence due to his obnoxious persona reflecting the glory of his longrunning performance as Ari Gold on Entourage (2004-2011 without being derivative
RocknRolla serves as a reminder of Guy Ritchie's talent for crafting a gritty crime-comedy in the style of a music video with a dedicated collection of talented cast members, but with little innovation to the story the entire affair feels tired.
Tambien al comparar con los otros dos, te hace notar el cambio de Londres en esos 10 y 15 años. ahora tiene un toque mucho mas 'Skinsesco' el bajo mundo inglés en la mente de Ritchie
Peor todavía es pensar que ya estamos a 10 años de aquel film practicamente, y no ha llegado la anunciada segunda parte. Recomendable verla dos veces.