Saturday, August 22, 2015

Flesh and Blood: The Story of the Krays (1991)

Director: Chris Short

Composer:  Mark Fishlock

Starring:  Ronald & Reginald Kray (archive footage), Peter Bourke & Doug Iles (narrators)

More info: Amazon.UK

Tagline: The true story of the East End 'Firm' and their reign of terror

Plot: A profile of Ronnie and Reggie Kray, two of the most notorious East End gangsters of the early 60s, as told by their family, friends and enemies. The brothers' reign of terror, which included extortion rackets, fraud and murder, was brought to an end when they were imprisoned for life, and later inspired the film 'The Krays'.  This disc sets out to cut through the myths and legends that surround the infamous Kray Twins to tell the true story of them and their reign of terror in London's gangland East End.

My rating: 7/10

Will I watch it again? No.

I loves me some true crime docs.  These two brothers are notorious for being Britain's most violent criminals and gangland leaders in the 50s and 60s.  I'm sure there are others that were just as brutal but these two kids got all the press. This documentary hits the familiar beats of setting the scene for the East End of London in the 1930s and 40s, the world they grew up in, their upbringing, early mischief, rise to power and fame and their eventual downfall.  The Krays were an interesting bunch and it's really surprising that the only film version of them is THE KRAYS (1990) which is a pretty good flick.  It's been over twenty years since I saw it, though.  Digging around IMDb in an effort to find anything about this documentary, I see that Tom Hardy has a film coming out called THE LEGEND, where he plays both brothers, and two films that are due this year, THE RISE OF THE KRAYS and THE FALL OF THE KRAYS, all of which I'm keen to see.  This doc is rather bland in its telling and in the narration.  Still, there are interviews with family members, the coppers that took them down and criminals who ran with the brothers and that makes it worth a watch but it'll also leave you wanting something more.  What, I don't know. 

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