The Firm – Review (Film)

The Firm

Being a Millwall fan brings it’s own prejudices with regard to hooligans and that whole football violence scene.

I’ve never been interested in that side of the game but the unwritten rule is that if you know where to look you can find trouble at or around almost any ground on a Saturday afternoon.

The recent mindless violence between Millwall and West Ham ‘fans’ at their Carling Cup tie was a throwback to the sort of thing seen in the 70’s and 80’s.

The irony of all this for me was that in amongst the condemnation of that night’s events was a trailer for the film The Firm. The story of one lads journey into 80’s hooliganism with the two main firms being… Yep you guessed it, Millwall and West Ham. 😆 You literally couldn’t make it up!

As a rule I’m not a big fan of football violence films but this was certainly the most impressive film I have seen of that ‘genre.’

The Firm 2

The Firm shows things from the perspective of Dom (Calum McNab) who ends up getting in with a bad crowd of lads through charismatic ringleader Bex Bissell (Paul Anderson – superb in his first major role).

This film certainly isn’t all doom and gloom and there is plenty of comedy to be had, both between the lads themselves and also between Dom and his father (Eddie Webber).

The violence is fairly graphic at times but it’s the nasty undercurrent bubbling away that really gets you. The waiting for something terrible to happen is almost as bad as seeing one of the lads get a real kicking.

Having worked on the music for the film I knew what was coming in terms of tracks but the way they handled the music in The Firm was really cool and helped the film maintain it’s impact.

Using licensed tracks for the first half and then switching to a dark, overbearing score for the more sinster second half was a nice touch.

The story itself was standard fare for this sort of tale: boy gets into footie violence, fits in ok, goes through rite of passage, realises he’s out of his depth etc I won’t spoil the end just in case you don’t know how it’ll turn out 🙂

Even if you’re not into this sort of film The Firm is definitely watchable. Hopefully most hooliganism has been left in the past and The Firm serves as a timely reminder of the ‘bad old days.’

Rating: 7/10

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