A punishing, survival epic, that depicts nature's heavenly beauty and raw savagery in equal measure. Also meditating on humanity's brutality towards itself. Leonardo DiCaprio's mostly wordless performance is a career best, and Tom Hardy pulls another dove of excellence out of his actor's hat. A word of note for the wonderful camerawork too, with long, flowing one shot takes that flit back and forth between the characters and events without cutting away. This is a mesmerizing, white knuckle journey through the heart of the beast, and the playground of the gods!
Although I was looking forward to seeing this, I wasn't wanking my geekometer to breaking point over it......I might be for the next one though, because this was brilliant! It doesn't break any new ground in regards to story, in fact, you could accuse it of walking in circles? But that's a minor gripe. What Christopher Nolan did for Batman, or the Daniel Craig era did for James Bond, J.J. Abrams has done for Star Wars. This episode has taken all the elements that made the original Star Wars mythology, and has given them new flesh. It presents the Star Wars universe that we all know, but also gives it a tangibility that's entirely fresh, the most important of which is..chemistry! There's a genuine chemistry, a genuine humanity between the new characters that has completely rejuvenated Star Wars, and brought it back to the cinematic forefront. Hoorah!
Do you see, George?! Do you see how it's done now?!
I left this movie feeling really wound up, because it should've been so much more! The first 45 minutes were great, I was in, but there was no progression after that. It depicted hardly any of The Krays' criminal life, the rise, the fall, the violence and brutality they were notorious for, none of that. I could've forgiven this if the film had devoted itself to being a character piece, but no, the film's biggest flaw for me was it's lack of character development, I felt I was kept outside as a viewer, and was not given much of a glimpse inside either Kray. The film delivered on some elements though, it recreated the era well, and Tom Hardy was fantastic, albeit criminally (boom boom) wasted in what he was given to work around. It's not a bad film by any means, but after a brilliant first act it's not a particularly good one either. I'll have to give it another day in court at some point.