Colin Diamond is happily married to Liz. They've got it all. Nice house, two cars, a good business. Colins a bit of a geezer, sure, he's not exactly "legit" and he knows some unpleasant characters but he loves Liz. He's old fashioned, a family man, he understands how much hard work "love" is and what it takes to make a marriage work.
Liz doesn't love Colin. She's told him so. She's fallen out of love. More worryingly she's "found" someone else. Colin knows what that means; it means she's sleeping with another man. Liz wants out and Colin wants to know he is, who this "other" man is, who he is and where he is.
The other man is a French waiter. You couldn't make it up. A French waiter. All tight jeans and Gallic charm, garlic charm. Colin, understandably, isn't best pleased. Truth be told he is pissed off. He's hacked off. He's cross. He's angry. He's devastated and depressed.
Colin and his friends (Meredith, Mal, Peanut and Archie) take the French waiter from his French waitering (against his will it has to be said) and tie him up, lock him in a wardrobe then sit around and wait for Colin to kill him.
From the writers of "Sexy Beast" this is a film that will disappoint anyone who saw the trailer and thought they were going to get a "Lock Stock" gangster movie with "geezers and birds". What you get instead is a fabulously written piece of theatre. The language may be fruity but it's delivered with a rhythm and style that leaves you slack jawed in wonder. Taking the language of Cockney gangsters and twisting it in a post-modern take on Shakespeare is no mean feat.
As a film it isn't any great shakes but as a piece of writing and as a masterclass in acting it is superb. Everyone in this is terrific. Ray Winstone as the broken, battered, exhausted and confused Colin Diamond, Ian McShane as the sinister, gay, ganglord Meredith, Tom Wilkinson as the man living with his mum while living a life outside the law, John Hurt as "mad" Frankie Fraser made flesh on screen as Peanut and Stephen Dillane as wide boy Mal are all devastatingly good.
A difficult film to recommend because I didn't feel like I was watching a film...a dark, comedic, twisted gangster film about the nature of love and the things we will and won't do for it on the silver screen in the form of a stage play.