Monday, 30 December 2013

New Town Killers

I would assume that the real villain's of this piece are meant to be the financial institutions, a member of which, a wealthy amoral banker, gets his rocks off by hunting and killing Edinburgh's forgotten underclass. A sort of computer game, but for real, involving a psychopathic yuppie Alastair Roskolnikov (Dougray Scott) and his naïve accomplice Jamie Stewart (Alastair Mackenzie). The 'game' involves someone avoiding capture over the course of one night and if they should be successful are rewarded with a large sum of money. But needless to say the odds are stacked well and truly against the hunted. Our victim is a sixteen-year-old lad Sean MacDonald (James Anthony Pearson) who needs the money to pay off his sisters spiralling drug debts.

I'm sure singer, songwriter and director Richard Jobson (16 Years of Alcohol 2003) has something serious to say in New Town Killers (2009) but it's not at all obvious other than to show that rich bankers are more than happy to pray on the lowly working classes which now is a pretty obvious statement but may be not quite so apparent when this film was made. Or is he trying to tell us that life is a game, played for high stakes by people who want to spice up their lives with cheap thrills at the expense of others?

It's a nasty wee film full of coincidences that makes no narrative sense and considering its murderous theme totally lacks tension. A disappointing outing from Jobson that's mundane and one where it is totally impossible to empathise with any of the characters. If I were you I'd certainly give this second rate movie a wide berth. Incidentally we do get a chance to see Doctor Who star Karen Gillan in her first feature film outing as the 'young girl in the bus station'.

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