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Snatch

A movie directed by Guy Ritchie

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Of crime and..."DAGS".

  • Jan 10, 2011
  • by
Rating:
+3
*** out of ****

Guy Ritchie's "Snatch" is a movie which charges at the audience as if it were a runaway horse; thus is packs exactly the kind of punch that it's designed to deliver. I find Ritchie's spiritual successor to "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" to be a far inferior yet still satisfying piece of work. It's the risky and effective mix of humor, chaos, and style that I expect out of a director like Guy Ritchie, and maybe that is why I find myself recommending it. Out of all honesty, "Snatch" is pretty much a mess. While the plot fits in with Ritchie's flamboyantly chaotic direction, it seems to focus on too many characters to the point where quite a few don't feel like characters at all. But whomever Ritchie chooses to give a funny/cool name seems to succeed as an interesting yet undeveloped individual, which is indeed, a troubling yet strange thing. Only Ritchie can do this; make a flawed film which can still be genuinely good. I had a lot of fun with "Snatch" and that's probably why I still enjoyed it, although it won't agree with everyone. There are those who just plain don't like Ritchie's directorial style (or the stories he tells), and that's perfectly understandable. Not everyone can tolerate stylish chaos, although it's quite difficult to deny that Ritchie succeeds in creating some of the most simple, entertaining heist flicks of our generation. "Snatch" is like just about everything else Ritchie has directing, and it's exploding with just enough energy for it to never feel overheated. It gets its fumes out easily enough, and what it all accumulates to is a well-made action flick; one without much action, but still passing as an entry to the genre. "Snatch" is a pretty talky film, so don't go into it expecting consistent gangster violence. However, there's still plenty of messy fun to be had. When the film gets actiony, it also gets sort of artsy. Guy Ritchie is a true artist; that is if pure chaos can be called art. As I've said so many times before, (filmic) art is in the eye of the beholder. Some will not seek art when approaching Ritchie's film. I was one of those people. I did however walk out with the impression that out of his effort, Guy Ritchie has once again impressed me with his work. And when all else fails, that's quite enough for me.

What to say of "Snatch's" plot? It's a mess. Maybe that's the only proper way to describe it. Don't get me wrong: I enjoyed hearing it. But it wasn't anything fascinating, and a lot of the time you have to stop and wonder what the bloody hell is going on. That, my friends, is both this film's flaw and its style. I think the plot was intended to jump around a lot to different groups of characters, and it's all supposed to "make sense" by the end. And thankfully, it does. This makes "Snatch" HAVE a plot, contrary to some action films which just don't, even if it's one that's far from perfect. So the story is that a man named Frankie Four Fingers has stolen a very valuable diamond, and is now planning on selling it. This leads several desperate men on a journey to steal it for themselves, while the rest of the characters seem to be in their own little world in which all this darned chaos is taking place. I can't say that it all goes together with utter perfection when all the dots are connected, although I will say one thing: never trust gypsies. "Snatch" is successful as an entertaining if uneven film about a heist, and it has characters whose names are quirkier than their personas. The plot is really the only huge flaw of the film, since occasionally it feels really tedious. However, it doesn't completely abolish any room for entertainment, and "Snatch" makes use of what it's got. Fans of Guy Ritchie's first wild go-round "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" will probably enjoy this flick too, even if "Snatch" won't follow in the footsteps of its predecessor in becoming a cult film. No matter, it's fun stuff. And it has a whacky sense of humor. Isn't that something?

"Snatch" has a great ensemble cast. Jason Statham is as badass as I'd want him to be, which is pretty darn badass if I do say so myself. Benicio Del Toro is good for the time he's actually in the film, although his role seems rather minor compared to how big it sounded on paper. Brad Pitt also makes for a pretty convincing and hilarious Gypsy ("Dags", anyone?), which is no surprise given his expansive talents as an actor. Dennis Farina ("Snatch" is probably one of his most memorable films) also plays a pretty big character, and I think this guy needs to act more. Coincidentally, so do other actors (who appear in this film) such as Rade Serbedzija. Lastly, Vinnie Jones (in his second collaboration with Guy Ritchie) gives a somewhat eccentric performance which is good (and when Vinnie Jones is good, it reminds us of why we all love him despite his generic tough-guy characters). I'd have to say that I liked just about everyone who was cast. I had no problem with one actor, since most of the performers were either funny, intense, or hilariously stereotypical. I love it.

I have to admit that I kind of like Guy Ritchie's directorial style. It's just that he's somewhat of a one-trick pony that shouldn't stray far away from his current style (although if he's a one-trick pony, he's one of the better ones). "Snatch" has the visual style; it has the violence (of a traditional and thoroughly entertaining flick). The only thing it just doesn't have is the memorability, although that's OK. I can sympathize for the aims that "Snatch" has, and I can DEFINITELY sympathize for what it achieves. I think it's a "you either love it or you hate it" kind of film, and while I'm not usually fond of these, I could forgive this one. "Snatch" is stylish enough and interesting enough to be entertaining, at least to me. What I loved: the cinematography, the style, the brutality, the sense of humor, and the soundtrack. I think it's sort of unnecessary to describe whatever I didn't like since now that I've long covered the plot department, what would be the point? If you're in to really awesome and fast-paced rides, then take the ticket. I will admit that I had fun with Ritchie's flick. This film seems to be his sort of joint, although it's a rare combination of laughs and bloodshed that could only appeal to a guy like me. Maybe that's why I support Guy Ritchie; because some people are seriously divided when it comes to liking or hating him. I don't find the decision to be particularly hard myself, although "Snatch" will do different things for different people. For that reason, I ask you to proceed with at least a little caution. Only see it if, in all honesty, it sounds interesting to you.

If anything, "Snatch" seems to know what it's doing and where it's going, although it's not without its bumps. Some of these bumps are minor, while others are quite large. "Snatch" nevertheless succeeds, in my opinion, in just about everything it sets out to do; entertain, thrill, and even intrigue. Director Guy Ritchie seems pretty content with his creation. Why shouldn't he be? Ritchie seems to like chaos and madness, thus he takes it upon himself to express his obsessions through filmmaking. I've definitely got to admire this about the guy. I mean, not a lot of directors do this. Especially on the level that Ritchie does. There's something wildly endearing about how Ritchie chooses to execute "Snatch", and I think it's what keeps the film interesting. It should please most people, although I wouldn't be surprised if the person next to me was scratching their heads. But maybe that is Ritchie's very intention; to CONFUSE us. To RIVET us. And to ultimately ENTERTAIN us. Damn right, all of those things are what Ritchie can do. He does all but one of them with "Snatch". I may not find it riveting, but it's maddeningly cool entertainment, and in a world where we don't get enough of that, he might as well be a pretty special guy. Ritchie should be proud of himself.

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January 14, 2011
Yeah, I feel you here. I liked this film a lot but I have to agree that the stroytelling wasn't that sound or solid. Great review!!
January 17, 2011
Thanks!!
 
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More Snatch (2000 movie) reviews
review by . June 26, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
What a follow-up to "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels!" It's the closest thing to a sequel without being one. Some say that "Snatch" is a poor follow up of Ritchie's first film, I say that this is an improvement on his signature style, an aggressive and a supercharged 21-gun salute to Britain film/filmmakers. The deftness displayed in this writer/director's pacing and editing is at times electrifying and sometimes simply beautiful. The soundtrack is not only superb and includes one of my personal …
review by . January 07, 2005
My cheek hurt - from laughing. This movie, filled to the rim with the funniest bunch of braindead crooks is not to be missed. Guy Ritchie pulls on every cliche but in such a perfect way that you just can't help yourself, you laugh out loud and there's no end in sight. Great characters, wonderful storyline, superb acting. You've just got to have it!!!
About the reviewer
Ryan J. Marshall ()
Ranked #11
It's very likely that the only kind of reviews I'll ever post here are movie reviews. I'm very passionate about film; and at this point, it pretty much controls my life. Film gives us a purpose; … more
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About this movie

Wiki

Usually it might seem a tad unfair to begin a review by referring to the director's missis. But then the missis in question wouldn't usually be Madonna--a woman whose ability to reinvent herself several times before breakfast seems in marked contrast to that of hubby Guy Ritchie. Certainly, this follow-up to the filmmaker's breakthrough film--the high-energy, expletive-strewn cockney-gangster movieLock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels--hardly breaks new ground being, well,anotherhigh-energy, expletive-strewn cockney-gangster movie. OK, so there are some differences. This time around our low-rent hoodlums are battling over dodgy fights and stolen diamonds rather than dodgy card games and stolen drugs. There has been some minor reshuffling of the cast too, with Sting and Dexter Fletcher making way for the more bankable Benicio Del Toro and Brad Pitt, the latter pretty much stealing the whole shebang as an incomprehensible Irish gypsy. And, sure, people who really, really likedLock, Stock--or have the memory of a goldfish--will really, really like this. The suspicion lingers, however, that if the director doesn't do something very different next time around then his career may prove to be considerably shorter than that of his missis.--Clark Collis
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Details

Director: Guy Ritchie
Genre: Drama
Release Date: January 19, 2001
MPAA Rating: R
DVD Release Date: July 3, 2001
Runtime: 1hr 42min
Studio: Sony Pictures
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