Review Rewind: ‘Snatch’

The Movie: “Snatch”

The Year: 2000

The People: Jason Statham as Turkish, Brad Pitt as Mickey O’Neil, Benicio Del Toro as Franky Four Fingers, Lennie James as Sol, Dennis Farina as Cousin Avi, Guy Ritchie as the director of the film.

The Non-Revealing Plot: Three separate plots are hatched to retrieve a stolen diamond.

Unofficial Genre: The film is a crime film with humorous aspects.

My Opinion (Emotional): It was hard for me to get too emotional during this movie for two reasons. First, the entire movie is Guy Ritchie performing every stylistic trick he can think of. Because this is the focus, Ritchie sacrifices the ability for his audience to feel any substantial connections to the characters. Second, all the characters are relatively bad people, and not in the anti-hero type of way. What’s more is that they are all caricatures. I understand that Ritchie’s vision required that the characters act they way they did, but I even got tired of seeing Brad Pitt play a completely unintelligible Irish boxer — and Brad Pitt is one of my favorite actors.

My Opinion (Technical): The first thing to talk about is the characters and their actors. Jason Statham’s character is the de facto main character, as he narrates. He plays the English gangster role quite well but he is the same character in every movie. If you copy and paste his character from the “Fast and Furious” franchise (2001–), or even from “Spy” (2015) into this movie, I would probably not be able to tell the difference. Brad Pitt’s character is kind of hilarious, at first. Also, considering “Fight Club” (1999) is my favorite movie of all time, and he plays an Irish, happy-go-lucky version of his “Fight Club” character here, I really was excited to see what this film would do with his character. But, as I mentioned before, his whole schtick eventually wore thin for me. Benicio Del Toro’s character was just uncomfortable to watch. Del Toro himself is not Jewish, yet he plays a Jewish hired thief. As a Jewish person, I can easily say that Del Toro’s portrayal was something I’d expect to see in an Adam Sandler movie or an SNL skit, not a (relatively) serious film. As for the emphasis on style I mentioned before, I actually enjoyed this aspect. Yes, it hindered the emotional capabilities of the film, but from a technical standpoint, I appreciated the camera tricks, such as the quick zoom into characters’ faces — a trick that was quite often utilized. Also, the editing was impressive. Though there was little attempt at creating long, meticulous scenes (which I usually like), and the majority of the film was comprised of quick cuts back and forth between many characters, I liked that Ritchie stuck with his methods throughout the entire movie.

Overall Rating: Good editing, consistent camera work and cool style made this film bearable. Lack of emotional depth plus off-putting characters kept me from enjoying it. I’d give this film a 4.5 out of 10.

If You Like This, You’ll Also Like: Trainspotting (1996).