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Daniel Craig, Kenneth Cranham, Colm Meany
Michael Gambon, George Harris, Jamie Foreman
Directed by Matthew Vaughn
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment 2005
If you are looking for a shoot-em-up action heavy gangster movie, Layer Cake isn't going to do it. This is a complex, character based British crime word film about the many layers in the pyramid and the difficulties of not being shoved off the pyramid.
Daniel Craig plays an unnamed London toff, X, who believes he is doing everything right and on the verge of being able to retire. Unfortunately, a drug dealer named Duke rips off some Serbian gangsters and associates Craig's name to the deed. To add to X's problems he is asked by his boss to find a missing girl and the Serb hitman, Dragan, is after him. When it comes to Freedom 55, you could do a lot better. X has to juggle everybody's demands and expectations in order to stay alive, never mind retire in peace.
Layer Cake is a complicated tale and not particularly heavy on action scenes for the most part. You really have to pay attention and follow the bouncing ball -or in this case 5 million extasy pills-to figure out a bit of what is going on.
This is really a character driven film and Craig is excellent as the main character. Colm Meany of Star Trek TNG fame and Jamie Foreman are also quite good as the buffer between X and the guy above him in the crime pyramid. Michael Gambon plays the baddie at the pinnacle.
The ending is rather bizarre.
Extra features include the usual useless commentary track. For some reason, the people doing the commentary track for Layer Cake speak as if they are describing golf on TV.