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Rise of the Footsoldier Part II


Stars: Ricci Harnett, Luke Mably, Steven Berkoff, Coralie Rose, Mark Preston, Tygo Gernandt, Slaine Kelly, Ryan Oliva

Director: Ricci Harnett

The second of two biopics about Carlton Leach (Harnett), who moved from being leader of the hooligans at West Ham football club into organised crime.

The survivor of the notorious Essex massacre of 1995 (which ended the previous film), in which three of his best friends were gunned down in their car, Leach finds his wife (Rose) now leaving him, taking with her his two young daughters, while he and his new crew, led by Sean (Mably) get back into hiring themselves out to people oppressed by rival gangs, whose members Leach and his men then carve up.

This is a truly pointless (and unforgivably long) sequel, with one act of violence blurring into another. It's written as well as directed by Harnett, whose screenplay consists mainly of heavy-duty swearing and attempts by Leach to reconcile with his wife. Harnett himself bulldozes his way through it all wearing a permanent scowl.

Appropriately, after a nonsensical confrontation with a Dutch gangster, Leach ends up where he started - at a West Ham football match - which would undoubtedly be more worth watching than this.

David Quinlan

UK 2015. UK Distributor: Signature. Colour by Panalux.
111 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 18.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 2, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 2, Swearing 3.

Review date: 09 Dec 2015