Film Review: “The Gentlemen”

THE GENTLEMEN
Starring: Matthew McConaughey abd Charlie Hunnam
Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Rated: Rated R
Running Time: 1 hr 53 mins
STX Entertainment 

There’s little that’s gentlemanly about the sordid cast of characters in director Guy Ritchie’s new action crime thriller “The Gentlemen.” However, there is plenty to enjoy in this wonderful caper that’s brimming with sharp dialogue, a delicious plot and a few laughs along the way. It is certainly Ritchie’s best effort since 2011’s “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” and is only surpassed by 2000’s “Snatch” as his greatest overall work. With a talented, all-star ensemble cast, and a terrific hook at the start, Ritchie takes us on an exciting, twisting journey that’s certainly not for the kiddos. 

From an impoverished childhood in the United States, Mickey Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) rose above his situation to earn a Rhodes Scholarship to England’s esteemed Oxford University. Instead of becoming a law-abiding scholar, Mickey saw the monetary potential in selling marijuana to his fellow students. Those humble beginnings led Mickey, often through violent means, to build a multi-million-dollar illegal empire. Despite the power, and prestige he commands, Mickey has grown tired of the game and wants out to spend time with his beloved, yet equally criminal wife, Rosalind (Michelle Dockery, “Downton Abbey”), for whom he will do anything. 

Much of this background information is told to us during an extended, elaborate conversation between an unsavory, thick-accented private investigator named Fletcher (scene stealer Hugh Grant), who’s been hired by a jilted tabloid editor snubbed in public by Mickey, and Mickey’s righthand enforcer, Ray (played with subdued rage by Charlie Hunnam, “Sons of Anarchy”). For his efforts, which he has typed up in a screenplay form, Fletcher wants 20 million British pounds to keep his scoop silent. 

Meanwhile, Mickey finds a potential buyer for his empire, but there is a concern that this will show competitors that he has become weak. Blood is spilled in the water when one of Mickey’s illegal sites is robbed by a group of young, social media savvy thugs led by a man known simply as Coach (Colin Farrell). The plot only thickens with the introduction of overly ambitious, young Chinese mobster Dry Eye (Henry Golding, “Crazy Rich Asians”) and the accidental death of a Russian mobster’s son. 

McConaughey is perfect for this role. Of course, he is quite adept at playing it cool, calm and collected, as demonstrated in a variety of his previous performances. What makes this more notable is the vengeful side he fleshes out while playing Mickey. It’s something we don’t normally see from him and he is brilliant at unleashing the lion in “The Gentlemen.” For their parts, Golding is a nice surprise as a villain and Farrell is marvelously entertaining, harkening back to Brad Pitt’s unintelligible performance in “Snatch.” 

Written by Ritchie, the plot is chock full of twists and surprises that keep one glue to the silver screen, waiting on edge as to what is going to happen next. There are some laughs amidst the violence, which is brutal enough, along with adult-oriented lingo, to make “The Gentlemen” non-kid friendly. Ritchie’s pacing is just as quick as the dialogue with nary a dull moment. In the end, “The Gentlemen” is a jolly good time and the best release of the new year thus far!  

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “The Gentlemen”

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends at STX Entertainment to give (50) readers and a guest the chance to be among the first to see the new film from director Guy Ritchie, “The Gentlemen.”

The film will be shown on Wednesday, January 22 at the Screenland Armour Theatre in North Kansas City, Missouri. The screening will begin at 7:00 pm.

If you’d like to attend all you have to do is click HERE! The first (50) readers to do so will receive a pass for (2) to attend the screening. This is a first come/first serve giveaway. Once the allotted number of passes have been claimed the giveaway is over. Good Luck!!

CD Review: Volbeat “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies”

Volbeat
“Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies”
Vertigo/Universal
Producer: Rob Caggiano
Tracks: 14

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

The Danish metal band Volbeat are back with a brand new full length studio album titled “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies”. The album features 14 new tracks that were produced by former Anthrax guitarist Rob Caggiano. “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies” is the groups 5th studio album and the follow up release to the 2010 album “Beyond Hell/Above Heaven”.

I first heard Volbeat when I saw them open for Metallica on the “Death Magnetic” tour. The band had this sound that was part Social Distortion part Godsmack. The bands performance really blew me away and I instantly became a fan. “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies” was an album that I really wanted to like however I think the band has drifted too far from their earlier sound which I loved. Each song on the album seems to feature a mix that is very layered and digital sounding. For me the album listens more like a pop/rock album than a metal album. Songs such as “Lola Montez” and “Cape of Our Hero” are perfect examples of this. Though there was an element of pop on the bands last album however it wasn’t as nearly prevalent.

Don’t get me wrong “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies” is not a bad album per say. However it caught me a little off guard as I was not expecting such a fluffy, pop laced album. After a few listens through there were a few tracks such as “The Nameless One” and “Room 24” which features a guest appearance buy metal legend King Diamond that I could see myself listening to more than once but as a whole I was a little underwhelmed by the album.

Track Listing:

1.)    Let’s Shake Some Dust

2.)    Pearl Hart

3.)    The Nameless One

4.)    Dead But Rising

5.)    Cape of Our Hero

6.)    Room 24 (Featuring: King Diamond)

7.)    The Hangman’s Body Count

8.)    My Body

9.)    Lola Montez

10.)  Black Bart

11.)  Lonesome Rider

12.)  The Sinner Is You

13.)  Doc Holliday

14.)  Our Loved Ones