I’m going to start off my review with two warnings about this movie.
First, this film is suuuuuuuuper British. Like overwhelmingly so. The dudes in the film all have incredibly heavy Cockney accents, which is essentially the British equivalent of the Boston accent. There are a bunch of jokes and references that the characters make in the film that are completely lost on me. One part of the film is SO British that it’s subtitled.
Second, there are like 30 characters in this film that matter, and other than Jason Statham (who wasn’t famous yet), I could not recognize any other actor. A Wikipedia search of the film after viewing it did tell me that Sting was in the movie, but I’m still uncertain of which character he played. Since most of these 30 characters look and talk the same, you will not be able to keep track of all of them, and it’s best to view them as part of a crew. I’ll list their official Dudefest.com crew names. There’s “The Statham Crew” (four dudes, Jason Statham is in it), “The Weed Growers” (four dudes, have a cage around the door), “The Next Door Neighbors” (five dudes, have the dude with ponytail and beard who wins for Cockney-est accent, aka least intelligible), “The Sex Shop Dudes” (old dude with the mustache, tall dude with the son, and the dude nicknamed “The Baptist”, due to his love of drowning people), “Tweedles Dee & Dumb”, (the two chubby thieves), “Crazy Mofo & Co.” (the crazy black dude and his four thugs), “The Greek” (the dude known as “The Greek”), “Traffic Cop” (a traffic cop), and “The Bartenders” (they aren’t really a crew, but there are a bunch of them in a bunch of different bars in the movie). Now that I’ve listed all nine crews and therefore finished the two warnings, let’s get on to the actual review.
The movie plot-wise plays out like an episode of Seinfeld in that there are a number of subplots that start off in the same place before going their separate ways and all coming together in the end. Because of the exorbitant number of characters there are, the movie starts off very slow, because a heavily Cockney accented narrator (initially believed to be Statham but is actually Alan Ford) gives backstory for almost all of them. Do not be deterred by the sheer number of characters or their Britishness though, because every minute of the movie is more interesting than the last, and the soundtrack is ballin’. There are a number of dudes in the film who I would love to see star in a film of their own, based on the sheer amount of Dudefest they project in their actions and decisions. I should also mention that there are two women with screen time in the film. One of them is a stripper, and the other goes on a machine gun rampage. So, dudefest.
I’ll end the review by relating the plot in relation to the nine crews. “The Statham Crew” becomes indebted to “The Sex Shop Dudes” following a loss in some sort of British poker game. “Tweedles Dee & Dumb” become indebted to “The Sex Shop Dudes” when they sell two priceless antique guns to the “The Greek”, who sells them to “The Statham Crew”. To get enough money to pay off their debt, “The Statham Crew” decides to pull a heistception and steal money and weed from “The Next Door Neighbors” after they steal that money and weed from “The Weed Growers”, who supply weed to “Crazy Mofo & Co.” for distribution. “The Traffic Cop” gets kidnapped by “The Next Door Neighbors” during the first level heist, and throughout the film, “The Bartenders” serve drinks to “The Statham Crew” in different bars. Towards the end of the film, all the plotlines come together, like that song by the Beatles, and a series of misunderstandings causes a number of shootouts that end with everyone involved dying. The only two multi-member crews that survive the movie are “The Statham Crew”, because they seem to get to all the shootouts after everyone involved is already dead, and “The Bartenders”, because they aren’t really a crew.