ⓘ Snatch (film)

Snatch (film)

ⓘ Snatch (film)

Snatch is a 2000 British crime comedy film written and directed by Guy Ritchie, featuring an ensemble cast. Set in the London criminal underworld, the film contains two intertwined plots: one dealing with the search for a stolen diamond, the other with a small-time boxing promoter who finds himself under the thumb of a ruthless gangster who is ready and willing to have his subordinates carry out severe and sadistic acts of violence.

The film features an assortment of characters, including Irish Traveller "One Punch" Mickey ONeil Brad Pitt, referred to as a "pikey", arms-dealer Boris "the Blade" Yurinov Rade Serbedzija, professional thief and gambling addict Franky "Four-Fingers" Benicio del Toro, American gangster-jeweller Abraham Denovitz known as "Cousin Avi" Dennis Farina, small-time crooks Sol Lennie James and Vinny Robbie Gee, getaway driver Tyrone Ade and bounty hunter Bullet-Tooth Tony Vinnie Jones. It is also distinguished by a kinetic direction and editing style, an intricate double plot featuring numerous ironic twists of chance and causality, and a fast pace.

The film shares themes, ideas and motifs with Ritchies first film, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. It is also filmed in the same visual style and features many of the same actors, including Vinnie Jones, Jason Statham and Alan Ford.


1. Plot

After stealing an 86-carat 17.2 g diamond in a heist in Antwerp, Franky "Four-Fingers" goes to London to see diamond dealer Doug "The Head" on behalf of New York jeweller "Cousin Avi". One of the other robbers advises Franky to obtain a gun from ex-KGB agent Boris "The Blade", then later calls Boris and encourages him to steal the diamond from him before he can turn it over to Doug.

Meanwhile, boxing promoter and slot machine shop owner Turkish persuades gangster "Brick Top" to put boxer "Gorgeous George" in a matchup against one of Brick Tops boxers. However, when Turkish sends his partner Tommy and Gorgeous George to purchase a caravan from a group of Irish Travellers, George gets into a fight with Mickey ONeil, a bare-knuckle boxing champion who badly injures George. Turkish persuades Mickey to replace George in his upcoming match by agreeing to purchase a new caravan for Mickeys mother. Brick Top agrees to the change on the condition that Mickey throws the fight in the fourth round.

Boris gives Franky a revolver in exchange for a favour: Franky is to place a bet on Boris behalf at Brick Tops bookies. Avi, knowing Franky has a gambling problem, flies to London with his bodyguard "Rosebud" to claim the diamond personally. Boris hires Vinny and Sol, two small-time crooks, to rob Franky while he is at the bookies. The robbery goes awry and Sol, Vinny, and their driver Tyrone are caught on camera, but manage to kidnap Franky.

Instead of throwing the fight, Mickey knocks his opponent out with a single punch. Infuriated, Brick Top robs Turkish of his savings and demands that Mickey fight again, and lose this time. Mickey refuses to fight again unless Turkish buys a better caravan for his mother, but Turkish has no money left since Brick Top stole his savings. Furious, Brick Top has his men vandalize Turkishs gambling arcade and burn down Mickeys mothers caravan while she is asleep inside. Meanwhile, Boris retrieves the diamond and murders Franky with a pistol. Brick Top tracks down Sol, Vinny, Tyrone, and their friend, Yardie "Bad Boy" Lincoln and plans on killing them for robbing his bookies. Sol bargains for their lives by promising Brick Top the stolen diamond, and is given 48 hours to retrieve it.

Avi and Doug hire "Bullet-Tooth" Tony to help them find Franky. When the trail leads to Boris, they kidnap him and retrieve the diamond, closely pursued by Sol, Vinny, and Tyrone. Turkish and Tommy, who are on their way to purchase a gun from Boris, are driving on the same stretch of road at the time. When Tommy throws Turkishs carton of milk out of their car window, it splashes over Tonys windscreen, causing him to crash and killing Rosebud in the process. Boris escapes from the wreck only to be hit by Tyrones car. Tony and Avi are confronted by Sol, Vinny, and Tyrone at a pub where Tony realizes that the trios pistols are replicas, which he contrasts with his real handgun, intimidating them into leaving. The wounded Boris arrives with an assault rifle and a grenade launcher looking for the diamond, but is shot and killed by Tony, who wounds Tyrone at the same time. Sol and Vinny leave a wounded Tyrone and escape with the diamond, which Vinny hides in his pants. When Tony catches up to them, they tell him that the diamond is back at their pawn shop. Once there, they produce the diamond, but it is promptly swallowed by a dog that Vinny got from the travellers. Avi wildly fires at the fleeing dog, accidentally killing Tony. He gives up and returns to New York.

Mickey agrees to fight to avoid more carnage, but gets so drunk after his mothers wake that Turkish fears he will not make it to the fourth round. If he fails to go down as agreed, Brick Tops men will execute Turkish, Tommy, Mickey, and the entire campsite of travellers. Mickey makes it to the fourth round, when he suddenly knocks out his opponent. Outside the arena, Brick Top and his men are killed by the travellers. Mickey has bet on himself to win, and waited until the fourth round to allow the travellers time to ambush and kill Brick Tops men at the campsite.

The next morning, Turkish and Tommy find the travellers campsite deserted. When confronted by the police, they cannot explain why they are there, until Vinnys dog suddenly arrives and they claim to be walking it. Sol and Vinny are arrested when the police find Franky and Tonys bodies in their car. Turkish and Tommy take the dog to a veterinarian to extract a squeaky toy that it had swallowed, and discover the diamond in its stomach, as well. They consult Doug about selling the diamond and he calls Avi, who returns to London.


2.1. Reception Box office

Snatch was largely successful, both in critical response and financial gross, and has gone on to develop a devoted cult following. From a budget of $10 million, the movie grossed £12.137.698 in the United Kingdom, $30.3 million in the United States and Canada, and a total of $83.6 million worldwide.


2.2. Reception Critical response

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 73%, based on 141 reviews, with a weighted average score of 6.41/10. The sites critical consensus reads, "Though perhaps a case of style over substance, Guy Ritchies second crime caper is full of snappy dialogue, dark comedy, and interesting characters." On Metacritic, the film has a score 55 out of 100, based on 31 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".

Snatch also appears on Empire magazines 2008 poll of the 500 greatest movies of all time at number 466.

While the film received mostly positive reviews, several reviewers commented negatively on perceived similarities in plot, character, setting, theme and style between Snatch and Ritchies previous work, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. In his review, Roger Ebert gave the film 2 out of 4 stars, writing that while ostensibly rooted in the London underworld, Pitts Irish traveller community were the most interesting element of the plot and the films clearest predecessors were all American: Dick Tracy comics, Damon Runyon stories, and zany Marx Brothers comedies. He raised the question of "What am I to say of Snatch, Ritchies new film, which follows the Lock, Stock formula so slavishly it could be like a new arrangement of the same song?" Writing in the New York Times Elvis Mitchell commented that "Mr. Ritchie seems to be stepping backward when he should be moving ahead". Some critics also argued that the film was lacking in depth and substance; many reviewers appeared to agree with Eberts comment that "the movie is not boring, but it doesnt build and it doesnt arrive anywhere".

The accent employed by Pitts character Mickey earned him a place in the ten "most terrible Irish accents ever to grace the silver screen" compiled by The Independent in March 2015. Reviewing the performance Jenn Selby said, "Cash prize for anyone that can understand what hes actually saying in this one ".


3. Soundtrack

Two versions of the soundtrack album were released, one on the Universal International label with 23 tracks and a TVT Records release with 20.

Track listing

  • "Shrinking Balls" – Vinnie Jones
  • "Ghost Town" – The Specials
  • "Diamond" – Klint
  • "Fuckin in the Bushes" – Oasis
  • "Avi Arrives" – Dennis Farina
  • "Avis Declaration" – Dennis Farina
  • "Sensual Woman" – The Herbaliser
  • "Cross the Track We Better Go Back" – Maceo & the Macks
  • "Lucky Star" – Madonna
  • "Hot Pants – Bobby Byrd
  • "Come Again!" – Alan Ford
  • "Angel" – Massive Attack
  • "Disco Science" – Mirwais
  • "Dont You Just Know It" – Huey "Piano" Smith & the Clowns
  • "Nemesis" – Alan Ford
  • "Dreadlock Holiday" – 10cc
  • "RRRR.Rumble" – Charles Cork
  • "Supermoves" – Overseer
  • "Zee Germans" – Jason Statham
  • "Hava Nagila" – John Murphy and Daniel L. Griffiths
  • "Vere Iz da Storn?" – Benicio del Toro
  • "Golden Brown" – The Stranglers
  • "Hernandos Hideaway" – The Johnston Brothers

4. Home media

The film has been released in multiple incarnations on DVD.

On 3 July 2001, a two-disc "Special Edition" was released, containing both a full screen and widescreen presentation of the feature. Also included was an audio commentary track with director Guy Ritchie and producer Matthew Vaughn. The special features on the second disc included a "making of" featurette, deleted scenes, original theatrical trailer and TV spots, text/photo galleries, storyboard comparisons, and filmographies.

On 17 September 2002, Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment released a "Deluxe Collection" DVD as part of the companys Superbit series. This release contained two discs, one being the special features disc of the original DVD release, and the other a superbit version of the feature. As is the case with superbit presentations, the disc was absent of the additional features included in the original standard DVD, such as the audio commentary. The disc did still contain subtitles in eight different languages including a "pikey" track, which only showed subtitles for the character Mickey.

Nine months later, on 3 June 2003, a single disc setup was released, with new cover art, containing the feature disc of the special edition set. This version was simply a repackaging, omitting the second disc.


5. Television

On 20 April 2016, Crackle announced that the go-ahead for a new television series, based on the film, had been agreed. On 22 August it was confirmed that Rupert Grint would both be executive producer and would star in the show. The series debuted on 16 March 2017 and had two seasons.

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