Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Written by:Guy Ritchie
Starring: Benicio Del Toro, Dennis Farina, Vinnie Jones, Brad Pitt, Jason Stratham, Ewen Bremner, Jason Flemyng
Released: November 9, 2000
Grade: B

In the tradition of his last film Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels, Guy Ritchie has again followed the “English gangster” theme in his follow up, Snatch.  Practically a sequel, Snatch is the story of many people who’s lives cross in a series of coincidences.

Turkish (Stratham) and Tommy (Stephen Graham) are two regular guys setting up a rigged boxing match for Brick Top (Alan Ford).  They’ve arranged for their boxer to go down in the fourth round so Brick Top and his friends can cash in with the bookies.  Two days before the fight, Tommy goes in search of a new caravan for Turkish and winds up in a gypsy community.  When an argument over price ensues, the boxer is flattened by gypsy Mickey O’Neill (Pitt), leaving them without a fight.  To save face, they convince Mickey to take his place in the ring.

Meanwhile in America, Uncle Avi (Farina) is overjoyed to find the jewel heist he organised has gone off without a hitch.  Franky Four Fingers (Del Toro) with his Russian crew stole an 84-carat diamond in Antwerp and has fled to London waiting to return to the States.  Franky has a nasty gambling habit and Avi is just hoping Franky can stay out of trouble.  That won’t be as easy as Franky has gotten wind of the fixed fight and wants a piece of the action.

Russian Boris The Blade (Rade Serbedzija) isn’t letting Franky just walk out of London with the diamond.  He’s arranged two pawnshop owners, Vinny (Robbie Gee) and Sol (Lennie James) to intercept Franky at the fight.

There are even more characters but to save you from total confusion, we’ll leave it at that.  The fundamental problem with Snatch is whilst well acted and directed, it is all too similar to Lock, Stock and other recent English films.  The idea has been done to death and one gets the feeling the studios are become less and less adventurous.

A slick soundtrack and quick camerawork add to the film’s positives but a soft ending spoils much of the earlier work.  Rent Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels.