In the movie’s opening moments, Gal Dove (Ray Winstone) is soaking up the sun on a hot summer’s day when – a giant boulder comes tumbling down a mountainside, narrowly missing him, and lands in his pool. It’s an incredibly prescient moment given that, later that night, an unseen force comes barreling into his life in the form of sociopath Don Logan (Ben Kingsley), a former “associate” who has come to Spain to enlist Gal for a heist. Gal is happily enjoying his retirement from his criminal career and politely turns down the job offer, but Don proves as intractable as that giant rock sitting at the bottom of Gal’s swimming pool. What follows is a test of endurance, not only for Gal, but those dear to him, as the sociopathic Don exerts his influence.
This film is rife with symbolism, some cumbersome (that prophetic boulder), some kind of silly (the Donny Darko-esque nightmare rabbit who stalks Gale in his visions), but the brasstacks of the narrative – the battle of wills, first between Gale and Don, later between Gale and the impossibly scarier mobster Teddy Bass (Ian McShane) – is terrific, unnervingly suspenseful. It’s all back-stopped by a great soundtrack, kicking things off with The Stranglers and ending with Dean Martin.
I enjoyed this one quite a bit although one element left me confused. Why does Teddy kill Harry at movie’s end? If it was simply to pressure Gale, then it really felt like overkill. I mean, literally.
So, who watched it? And what did you think?