|Directed by||J. K. Amalou|
|Produced by||J. K. Amalou
Michael Riley (film producer)
|Written by||J. K. Amalou|
|Edited by||Luc Barnier
|October 28, 1996|
Hard Men is a British crime movie that was directed by J. K. Amalou. A forerunner to Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels, it was originally shown 28 October 1996 at the London Film Festival. It was released in cinemas in 1997.
The plot resolves around three friends - Bear, Speed and Tone - working as debt collectors on behalf of Pops Den (Mad Frank Fraiser). Tone discovers he has a baby daughter and decides to retire from gangster life. Pops Den subsequently orders Bear and Speed to kill Tone and to deliver his hand at 9am the following day. The story shows the fears that Bear and Speed have while trying to think of a way to kill Tone trying to give him one last big night.
Empire panned the movie, writing "The one-dimensional caricatures trudge their way through an uninspired plot with precious little chance to get under anyone's skin or work out if Amalou has anything to say about honour among thieves, loyalty or betrayal." Variety also wrote a negative review, as they felt that the "Film has a consistently interesting look on an obviously meager budget, with atmospheric use of grungy London locations and much use of close-ups in dialogue sequences. The latter, unfortunately, only serve to emphasize the script’s weaknesses."
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