Army-trained Richard (Considine) returns to his hometown with his mentally-challenged younger brother, Anthony (Kebbell), in tow. Anthony has been used and abused by a raggedy bunch of local drug dealers, and Richard plans to teach the bullies a deadly lesson...
Shane Meadows' raw revenge flick should be called Sympathy For The Bogeyman, because the director dusts off the invincible-killer-picks-off-teens routine and tells it from the bogeyman's point of view. The result is a thoughtful, possibly controversial, horror that offers none of the easy comforts typical of the genre these victims are far from innocent, but do they deserve to die?
The film is so pure of purpose that it feels like a zero-budget debut; after the sprawling Once Upon A Time In The Midlands, that may have been Meadows' intention. Its first steps are, in fact, faltering, with the supporting cast struggling to improvise necessary exposition but whenever Considine is onscreen, the movie has a magnetic centre around which the others can happily orbit.
Potentially Britain's answer to De Niro, the actor made a searing debut in Meadow's A Room For Romeo Brass, a film that boldly changed gear halfway through. This is even more fearless genre conventions are trashed, key characters summarily dispatched and liberal niceties squashed. Meadows may not offer genuine insight into the psychology of monsters, but here he has created a memorable movie bogeyman.
Disturbing, uncompromising and completely gripping, this could do for slasher movies what 28 Days Later did for zombie flicks.