6 out 10
Director: Alex De Rakoff
Release Date: 30th October 2009
Cast: Tamer Hassan, Danny Dyer, Brenda Blethyn and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson with Ashley Walters, Robbie Gee, Monet Mazur, Omid Djalli, Alan Ford, Bronson Webb and Phil Davis
Writer: Alex De Rakoff
Trailer: DEAD MAN RUNNING
READ JOE PESCI’s counter review at the foot of the page – he loved this!!!
Thank god all the time put into sitting on my arse watching bad Danny Dyer (MEAN MACHINE) or Tamer Hassan (JACK FALLS) movies has paid off. It’s been hard work to get to this point but at last I’ve found one that I can recommend. Now to be fair it is fairly old so got released at the start of the downward film helter skelter this pair have been skidding around for the last couple of years. But a good film is a good film nonetheless. There’s much to like about this knockabout caper movie that comes over like a modern day Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Tamer and Danny play two broke travel agents, Nick & Bing, who have put their dodgy life of crime behind them. Only thing is an old unpaid debt to a big time American gangster, Mr Thigo (Rapper 50 CENT) floats to the top of their attention spans. This means that they must settle £100,000 within 24 hours or Tamer’s Mum gets her head blown off by shotgun wielding yob, Johhny Sands (PHIL DAVIS – ANOTHER YEAR). A trawl of London’s dodgy geezers, dog races, assasinations, bad drugs and police chases ensue to generally humorous effect.
Dead Man Running is standard material but throws in a couple of surprises and riffs on typical character arcs. Tamer and Danny’s duo come across as likeable chaps and you want them to meet their deadly deadline by any means. Tamer’s mum is played in lively fashion by Brenda Blethyn (LONDON RIVER) who proves to be a tough cookie and more than able to handle herself despite being wheelchair bound. Her great way of taking it all in her stride is probably a clue to how come her son came out the way he has. Great support comes from familiar faces like Ashley Walters (ST. GEORGE’S DAY), Omid Djalili (SEX & THE CITY 2) and Robbie Gee (DESMOND’S), all contributing amply to the gallery of rogues.
Whilst not a game changer it is a solid little caper comedy through London’s seemier side. Nice performances help from the leads boosting the proceedings with a script that is economic yet funny. It certainly has enough ideas up it’s sleeve to get our likely lads out of an endless number of tight spots. Its a shame that this may have been the last half decent team up between Tamer and Danny. There has been the odd blip in their down trajectory but I hope one day they return to the former glories of the supremely entertaining The Business or Severance.
Come back Dyer, come back Hassan! I want to see some more enjoyable and inventive little British capers like this. Solid.
6 out 10 – Nothing new, but it’s still an above average UK gangster comedy yarn.
WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT C*NT IN BEFORE? (Only Joking!)
- Tamer Hassan: Bitter Harvest, Breakdown (2016), Robot Overlords, The Hooligan Factory, Diamond Heist, The Double (2012), Freerunner, The Reverend (2012), Bonded By Blood, Kick Ass, Goal 3, The Hike, The Last Seven, Jack Falls, Sucker Punch (2008), Beyond The Rave, City Rats, Cass, Eastern
- Danny Dyer: Eastenders (TV), Assassin (2015), Blood Shot, The Hooligan Factory, Vendetta, Run For Your Wife, Lemon La Vida Loca (TV), Plebs (TV), Deviation, Freerunner, The Age Of Heroes, 7Lives, Basement, Pimp, Malice In Wonderland, Just For The Record, Dead Man Running, Dead Cert, The Devil’s Playground, Jack Said, City Rats, Doghouse, Adulthood, Straightheads, Outlaw (2007), Severance, The Other Half, Borstal Boy, The Business, The Football Factory, Wasp (short), Mean Machine, High Heels and Low Lifes, Goodbye Charlie Bright, Greenfingers, The Trench, Human Traffic
- Brenda Blethyn: London River, Atonement, Picaddilly Jim, On a Clear Day, Lovely & Amazing, Pride & Prejudice (2005), A Way of Life, Night Train, Saving Grace, Little Voice, Girls’ Night, Secrets and Lies, Remember Me?, A River Runs Through It
- Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson: Southpaw, Spy (2015), Last Vegas, Escape Plan, Fire With Fire, Frozen Ground, Set Up, Blood Out, All Things Fall Apart, 13, Righteous Kill, Get Rich Or Die Tryin’
- Ashley Walters: Take Down, The Aliens (TV), Cuffs (TV), Montana, Top Boy (TV), All Stars, St. George’s Day, AnuvaHood, Demons Never Die, Sket, Speed Racer, Life and Lyrics, Get Rich Or Die Tryin’, Goal, Stormchaser– Alex Rider, Bullet Boy
- Monet Mazur: Torque
- Robbie Gee: The Intent, Plastic, Young Dracula (TV), The Fades (TV), Shank, Bad Day, Hush, Life and Lyrics, Underworld, Cass, Rollin’ With The Nines, Mean Machine, Snatch, G:MT – Greenwich Mean Time, Desmonds (TV), The Firm (1989)
- Omid Djalili: Molly Moon, Shaun The Sheep Movie (voice), Sex & The City 2, Big Fat Gypsy Gangster, Mr Nice, The Infidel, Alien Autopsy, Grow Your Own, Anita & Me, Mean Machine, The Mummy (1999)
- Alan Ford: Gloves Off, A Hitman In London, The Smoke, The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared, Lilyhammer (TV), Cockneys Vs. Zombies, The Sweeney, Airborne (2012), Strippers Vs. Werewolves, Jack Falls, Exorcist – The Beginning, Snatch, Lock Stock & Two Smoking
- Bronson Webb: Pan, Still Life, Pusher (2012), Payback Season, Game of Thrones (TV), The Disappeared, Chromophobia
- Phil Davis: We Are Tourists, Dough, Mr Holmes, Age of Kill, In The Blood (2015), Whitechapel (TV), Being Human (TV), Borrowed Time, Fast Girls, Outside Bet, Brighton Rock (2011), Another Year, The Big I Am, Just For The Record, Cassandra’s Dream, Notes On a Scandal, The Baby Juice Express, Vera Drake, Nicholas Nickleby (2002), Photographing Fairies, Crimetime, I.D. (dir), Blue Ice, Alien 3, High Hopes, The Bounty, Quadrophenia