Title – Welcome to the Punch (2013)
Director – Eran Creevy (Shifty)
Cast – James McAvoy, Mark Strong, Andrea Riseborough, Johnny Harris, Peter Mullan, David Morrissey
Plot – Detective Max Lewinsky (McAvoy) wounded in his last attempt years previous to capture criminal Jacob Sternwood (Strong) finds himself with a fresh opportunity to get revenge when Jacob makes his way back to London.
“I’ll tell you why I’m a good soldier, because of selfless commitment”
Review by Eddie on 14/11/2013
Welcome to the Punch is certainly a blue gloomy affair, a movie where there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of smiles or laughter in between the facial grimaces or angry looking people. What Welcome to the Punch also is however is one of the more original and unconventional action movies in recent memory and a fairly decent attempt at London’s version of Michael Mann’s classic action caper Heat.
Starting off proceedings in a pretty generic type of way we quickly realise that James McAvoy’s young and determined cop Max Lewinsky will stop at nothing to capture criminal mastermind Jacob Sternwood played by Mark Strong who again delivers a great bad guy but seriously can someone give this guy a role where he is not a hitman/crime boss/bank robber/cop? After an attempt to capture Jacob goes very wrong for Max it sets up the impending story where there will be double crosses, deaths, facial grimaces and more twists than you can poke a giant knee syringe at. The frenetic story line while not making a whole lot of logical sense keeps the film pumping at a grand rate and Creevy’s direction only helps with the feeling of originality.
Making great use of London and it’s city scape during mainly the night (again a clear homage to Heat) Creevy shows quite a flair with filming of his scenes, one in particular in an old lady’s apartments is one of the better singular scenes filmed this year. Creevy’s direction of action driven scenes also showcases that he is a talent to watch and one can only hope despite the films poor box office performance he is given chance again to direct such material as presented here.
With so many formulaic and generic action films flooding the marketplace over recent years it was a refreshing experience to sit back and enjoy Welcome to the Punch, a film that could teach it’s USA cousins a thing or two in the action/crime stakes. There are many issues with the film, mainly that of McAvoy’s central performance (one has never committed so many facial grimaces to screen) but there is enough good will from the other aspects of the film including some great supporting turns by the ever good Peter Mullans and This is England 86 scene stealer Johnny Harris as ex-soldier Dean Warns that Welcome to the Punch should provide all the goods needed for fans of fast and well-made action movies.
3 and a half “Was that Jason Flemyng?” out of 5
- Welcome To The Punch review (thesun.co.uk)
- Welcome to the Punch Movie Review | Omy.sg Movie Invite (mitsueki.wordpress.com)
- Welcome To The Punch – New Clip (close-upfilm.com)