VOD film review: Lords of London
Ivan Radford | On 07, Jan 2014
Director: Antonio Simoncini
Cast: Glen Murphy, Ray Winstone
Watch Lords of London online in the UK: Amazon Prime / iTunes / Prime Video (Buy/Rent) / Rakuten TV / Google Play
“Is where you come from really better than this?”
That’s one of the locals from Abruzzo to Tony (Murphy), a London gangster who is confused to find himself in the middle of Italy. He’s not the only one: with Ray Winstone and Big Ben on the DVD cover of Lords of London, not to mention its title, you don’t expect to spend most of Antonio Simoncini’s movie abroad. But that’s what you get: 90 minutes of green trees rather than grey streets and red phone boxes. It’s a surprising departure from the genre norms, but it turns to be a good thing.
That’s not to say Lords of London (originally titled Lost in Italy) is free from genre cliches. There may not be guns and cockney accents galore, but the Italians are stereotypical in their own way. You might as well call them Token Italian Villager 1, or Token Italian Villager 2.
“Look where you are,” Token Italian Villager tells Tony. “But I don’t know where I am!” he replies. Token Italian Villager 2 wastes no time explaining the situation: his daughter wants to run off with a no-good London boy with slicked back hair. As for Tony? All we know is he got shot last night in London and woke up in the sleepy Italian town.
As he pieces together what’s going on, Ray Winstone’s Terry pops up in grisly flashbacks. Storming around the UK capital, effing and blinding, he bullies his wife, threatens others and gets very angry about cold scrambled eggs. Oh yes, he’s a regular lord of London, alright. Winstone is so good at playing the bespectacled bastard that you almost wish the rest of the film had as much character, but a strong turn from Glen Murphy gives some weight to his end of the story. Simoncini, meanwhile, shoots his new home with the kind of beauty you’d expect, all quiet cobblestones and sunsets.
The solution to it all may stare you in the face before the final act, but that change of scenery and Ray’s towering presence does wonders for a film that otherwise could have been forgettable. A likeable character drama, Lords of London is not the crime movie you were expecting – but maybe that misleading title is a good thing. After all, it’s a lot better than where it might have come from.
Where can I buy or rent Lords of London online in the UK?
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