2016 MOVIE PREVIEW – FREE FIRE (2016)
TITLE: FREE FIRE (2016)
DIRECTOR: Ben Wheatley
SCREENPLAY: Amy Jump, Ben Wheatley
CAST: Armie Hammer, Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy, Jack Reynor, Michael Smiley, Sam Riley, Sharlto Copley etc.
STORY: An arms-deal-gone-wrong sets off a blistering gun fight in an abandoned warehouse.
UK RELEASE DATE: 31st March 2017
FIVE REASONS THIS IS GREAT!
1. Ben Wheatley and his writing/editing partner Amy Jump make independent low-medium budgeted films, seemingly on their own terms, get cracking actors involved and receive decent critical praise too. The recent critically acclaimed High Rise (2015) was an intriguing filmic cult hit while his grim crime-horror Kill List (2011), violently focused on two hit-men’s descent into hell. Wheatley’s work on comedy-serial-killer film Sightseers (2012), Dr Who, and Ideal confirmed him as a very talented filmmaker.
2. During a London Film Festival Q & A Wheatley basically said, “I wanted to make a film with guns where people get hurt.” And he has certainly succeeded there, because Free Fire is an all-out-ballsy-gritty-shoot-em-up.
3. The cast are all brilliant, but I personally loved Armie Hammer’s suave Jewish hit-man and Sharlto Copley’s obnoxious Afrikaner; plus Sam Riley is also a standout as the junkie prick whose behaviour ultimately screws the deal.
4. The script is terrific with sparkling one-liners throughout as the cast spit out insults and zingers with glee. Do you remember when you play gunfights with your mates in the playground? Well, this is the film equivalent of that – except with more blood and violence and death.
5. Stylistically the film is a joy employing a wonderful 1970s setting with actors dressed up in flares, beards, sideburns, dagger-collars, long hair and Cuban heels, all while delivering a fast-paced-high-octane-gun-fest. The soundtrack is a hoot too with a particularly fun use of a middle-of-the-road classic.