Sunday, November 14, 2010

Get Carter (1971)

Director: Mike Hodges

Starring: Michael Caine, Ian Hendry, Britt Ekland

More info: IMDb

Tagline: What happens when a professional killer violates the code? Get Carter!

Plot: Jack Carter (Michael Caine) -- a vindictive and amoral London gangster -- returns to his home town of Newcastle after his brother dies in a car accident. Carter, however, is convinced that he was murdered, and begins an investigation into Newcastle's criminal underworld. When Carter is ordered to leave town by the minions of a shadowy mob boss, his suspicious become confirmed, and he begins his brutal vengeance.

My rating: 8/10

Will I watch it again? Oh, yeah!

GREAT British gangster flick. One of the best. Between the Brits and the Italians, no one did crime better and more often. Michael Caine's Carter is a serious badass but it's not like he's working hard at being one - he just is. Killing comes naturally to him. He doesn't fuck around and he knows how to get the job done with the least bit of resistance and effort.

Roy Budd's score is tops. It hits just the right groove and it feels like it's got its finger on the pulse of the film. There's a great cue where the main theme is heard while Carter is traveling by train to Newcastle. As the train slows, the instruments drop out naturally, one by one, until there's nothing left but the string bass as it slows to a halt as the train stops. I wouldn't say it's done for gimmick's sake because it really works well. Very nice!

I firmly stand behind my belief that the 70s was the greatest decade (overall) for film. I love the cynicism, the grit, the edge, the scores. Film makers took chances back then that we just haven't seen much of since or before. This picture was one of four crime films I watched over the past two nights. I didn't plan it that way. TRICK BABY was so good that I went to HICKEY & BOGGS and then I hit two I hadn't seen in a while - GET CARTER and REVOLVER. They're all fantastic films that share what I love about this decade and they just happen to have all been released between 1971 and 1973. I haven't seen the 2000 Stallone remake. I've heard bad things, very bad things, but that won't stop me. I'll get around to it eventually.

But in the's a bit of Michael Caine fun with Steeve Coogan & Rob Brydon from their HILARIOUS new BBC show, THE TRIP...

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