Were you excited about the coming Guy Ritchie film? Are you, now that it’s been released, still excited by the film? Whilst The Gentlemen fits the mould of a Guy Ritchie directed, with how there is an obviously increased Ritchie-ness to the production, there is little doubt he stepped on the fuel peddle a tad too aggressively. If you’re into the kind of overly violent wildly racist films Ritchie makes, filled with recognisable talent, The Gentlemen is possibly something you’ll enjoy.
The Gentleman stars Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Colin Farrell, Henry Golding, Hugh Grant, and Eddie Marsan. Clearly, with The Gentlemen being a Ritchie production, it’s not going to pass the Bechdel-Wallace Test. Anyone familiar with the director’s film catalogue will know that that’s not happening. Cinemagoers don’t watch Ritchie’s films with the hopes of seeing a balanced male/female cast.
There is something undeniably endearing about the lead characters which are fun to watch. When Hugh Grant’s character references “liquorice assortment of tasty mates,” an obvious nod to the British candy Liquorice Allsorts, anyone with half a brain cell can see where he’s going with that remark. Charlie Hunnam’s Ray doesn’t seem surprised by what he hears.
Grant’s character is a private investigator with the gift of the gab. With how he tells the story, not that it isn’t entertaining, Fletcher can spin a story better than anyone. Fletcher is a bold storyteller with a flair for linguistics and he isn’t afraid to express his thoughts with a touch of poetic licence and a hint of homophobia.
Vulgar language, fitting with the criminal class narrative, is present throughout the entire production. Is this a criticism? Not at all. It adds a certain authenticity to the film that wouldn’t exist if it weren’t there.
Who are the heroes and the zeroes of the production? The characters are all appropriately dressed, sometimes flamboyantly sometimes not, there is more than a hint of suitability. Suitability isn’t a word one would typically associate with Ritchie’s films. Regardless of the flashy suits, fancy dresses, and tracksuits, there is a message in this production which requires audience members to marinate over after leaving the cinema.
Farrell’s Coach, not one for suffering fools gladly, has more than a few issues with the teenagers that frequent the boxing gym. These teenaged gym rats cause the sh*t to hit the fan when they steal a significant amount of bush from McConaughey’s kingpin Michael “Mickey” Pearson. After stupidly raiding one of Mickey’s farms, one they film, the gym rats post it to YouTube.
In the closing minutes, with a clear view of a poster advertising Ritchie’s 2015 film The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Fletcher attempts to sell the rights to his screenplay. McConaughey, in the final seconds, takes over the narration. It’s enough to tell us Ray is hiding something significant. That something might be could be revealed in a possible sequel.