Two years ago Brit director -- and Madonna marriage material of the moment --
Guy Ritchie wowed audiences with the cartoon pacing and stylistic verve of his
modest budget crime caper, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. For his
eagerly awaited follow-up, Ritchie has concocted the exact same movie. Besides
the beefier budget, the only discernible differences are the coveted object and
the smattering of big-name American actors who lend their services to this
"trendy to be in" romp.
The heist du jour touches off in Antwerp, where, disguised as Chassidic Jews,
Franky Four Fingers (Benicio Del Toro in a scant role) and crew extricate an
86-carat diamond from the Fort Knox of jewelers. When Franky hits the tarmac in
London, the unsnuffable Russian, Boris the Blade (Rade Sherbedgia), gets wind
of the score and sets out to usurp the big rock, as does American mafioso
Cousin Avi (Dennis Farina). Caught up in the mix are a trio of bungling thugs
plus Brad Pitt (spouting gibberish as One Punch Mickey O'Neil), the unbeatable
Gypsy boxer, and an under-the-gun boxing promoter by the name of Turkish (Jason
Statham) who serves as a lightning rod for all of the film's action. Like its
predecessor, Snatch is a piquant visual experience, and there are some engaging
caricatures to sink your teeth into, but overall it has too many players and
too many shell games to be more than a sideshow attraction.
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