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David Blair directs this powerful British Drama, loosely inspired by John Steinbeck's novel 'Of Mice and Men'. Set in Nottingham, the film revolves around the relationship between the thuggish Danny (Stephen Graham) and Joseph (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), a giant of a man with a mental age of seven. When Danny finds himself in debt to a local crime boss, he feels he is left with no choice but to manipulate Joseph into participating in a series of underground cage fights from which Danny can pay his debts.
"Best Laid Plans" is a crime drama that focuses on Danny and Joseph. Danny is in over his head with the local crime boss and when they spot him and Joseph stealing a washer machine they chase Danny down and decide to make him pay in a more violent way, but when Joseph steps in to save Danny the crime boss decides to let Danny off and suggests that he should convince Joseph to fight in some underground cage matches to pay back what he owes. Joseph is a big, strong man but he is also mentally handicapped, he does not want to fight but Danny soon has him in the ring doing his dirty work.
Director, David Blair only uses "Of Mice and Men" loosely so much of the story is his own. The film is at times very dramatic and the violence is brutal and very realistic. A character-driven film that is about dreams, lies and even love. It's a film that totally engages the audience and you immediately have feelings for the characters in one way or another. Danny is a tough challenge to like, on one side of it he does take care of Joseph which is a good thing but on the other hand he uses him to do his dirty work which isn't cool at all since Joseph doesn't know any better. The film also tosses in a subplot which is basically the love story part of the film, it's very well done and it doesn't distract from the film's main plot.
Besides the film's story, it's realistic dialogue keeps you interested but what really sold me about the film was it's amazing cast. Stephen Graham and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje are both terrific as Danny and Joseph, both give powerful and realistic performances that takes the film up another level.
Production wise the film's gritty look really adds to the mood and the cinematography is amazing. Done on a low-budget the film looks much bigger, don't expect a big Hollywood movie here with lots of action and explosions because that's not what this film is. Instead expect a deeply moving drama that draws you in and never lets you go till the very end. British cinema is either hit or miss for me but I have to say I enjoyed this film very much and recommend to any fan of the genre.
Available on DVD and Blu-ray + DVD Combo Pack. You can order the film HERE.
A mixture of great story telling, superb direction and stellar acting makes "Best Laid Plans" a film worth watching.
Released by Well Go USA
*** 1/2 Out Of *****