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Feature
Swingers (1996)
A true indie, this one, given that large sections of this film in the casino, and on the highway were shot without the proper permits, while director and stars pretended that the camera was turned off as the cops stood by. But the results of this largely plotless story of friends rallying round their suddenly single pal are undeniable. One of the very best buddy comedies out there, embraced by men the world over as somehow descriptive of their twenties, it's a perfect example of what happens when that strange alchemy between cast, crew, script and tone all work perfectly.

Dead Man's Shoes (2004)
Most films on this list are here because of the man behind the camera. In this case, and with no disrespect to Shane Meadows' assured direction, it's the stunning turn by its star and co-writer, Paddy Considine that's won it a place. He's the central character, an ex-soldier who returns to his hometown and brings down a world of pain on the men who bullied his younger brother. A showcase for a deserving actor, and a perfect example of the indie sector's ability to tackle storylines that studios would shy away from, this is one of the finest British films in years.

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