New Town Killers
Richard Jobson’s Edinburgh-set credit crunch thriller is the best film and certainly his most commercial since his impressive 2003 debut 16 Years of Alcohol. As he did with that film, Jobson makes inventive use of the city he calls home, shooting in the nooks and crannies between the overly familiar picture postcard views of the Scottish capital. And although the city played an important role in Jobson’s semi-autobiographical first film, it’s arguably more integral to the story of his latest.
The plot concerns a young lad, named Sean (James Anthony Pearson from Control), from one of Edinburgh’s poor housing schemes who reluctantly agrees to play a sinister game of tag with a pair of smartly dressed private bankers, Alistair (Dougray Scott) and Jamie (Alistair Mackenzie). If Sean can evade his pursuers for 12 hours overnight he’ll win £12,000; if he’s caught he won’t see the morning light.
What follows is a fast-paced game of cat-and-mouse in which the nasty, nihilistic Alistair and his less malevolent sidekick chase the good natured but under-privileged Sean all over both the New and Old Towns of Edinburgh. It’s entertaining with some terrific turns from the cast, particularly from Scott who really makes a meal of his enigmatic villain.
Beyond that, New Town Killers provides smart, mordant commentary on the gulf between the rich and poor, all of which makes it very timely indeed.
Selected release from Fri 12 Jun.