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Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

Guy Ritchie is all about gags and pacing. When he’s on his game — and he is here — he synchronizes characters, images, and music into a mixture of screwball comedy and brass knuckles noir. Four wannabe London stiffs screw up a card game they expect to win and owe an East End thug, Hatchet “Harry” Lonsdale, a lot more cash than they have — and Harry ain’t happy. But the scheme they concoct to make it right spins out of control and the movie accelerates Tarantino-like into a hilariously vicious scam-fest with guns blazing. The boys, Eddy (Nick Moran), Soap (Dexter Fletcher), Tom (Jason Flemyng), and Bacon (Jason Statham) are comic gumption to watch. P.H. Moriarty mugs his way through Hatchet. Even Sting (Eddy’s father) gets a turn.