Directed by Jonathan Lynn
It’s a romp. The long running English fascination with the gentleman crook reaches its height as Bill Nighy, as Victor Maynard, a hit man employed to kill art thief Rose (Emily Blunt) fails to do so. They end up killing someone sent to kill them in turn, and we’re off into escape and hide territory, with Rupert Grint (from Harry Potter) as Tony, the bystander who gets involved, making up the third of the threesome. This very English film is an adaptation of a French original.
Our three heroes
It rests entirely on a brilliant cast, with the high-contrast Nighy-Blunt-Grint threesome bearing comparison to the Lemmon-Monroe-Curtis one in Some Like It Hot. That’s praise mainly for Emily Blunt who combines sex appeal and comedy in a way few women actors have done as well since Marilyn Monroe, although Emily Blunt’s totally different and very English.
It’s that sort of film …
Martin Freeman pops up as the assassin hired to assassinate the errant assassin (it’s that kind of film), sporting big, bright white choppers, and looking uncannily like Norman Wisdom.
Not Norman Wisdom
In two weeks I saw Freeman as Rembrandt, Dr Watson in the modern times Sherlock Holmes TV series and as an assassin participating in jokes about Rembrandt (Tell me where he lives … his sidekick insists), the guy he was playing in Nightwatching. Rupert Everett makes up the core team, as the guy soliciting the hit. It’s an excellent British team.
It wasn’t destined to be huge on theatrical release, but this film is in the Four Weddings & A Funeral territory, like Cemetery Junction, where DVD sales and rentals will go on happily for ages.