Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Noel Clarke in Brotherhood
"You could have written the script on the back of Ray Winstone's betting slip"

Noel Clarke's trilogy (Kidulthood, Adulthood, Brotherhood) should have been a six-part TV series. Its cinematic qualities are not immediately obvious. Also Brotherhood's storyline is connected to the others which makes the film, as a stand alone, confusing at best.

In its cliche form it hangs from the balcony of a high rise as fingertip tension mirrors a thousand celluloid suicides.

Copy picture

The plot is mired by the knowledge that stuff has gone before, explaining the presence of violence. It begins with the attempted assassination of a singer in a night club who happens to be the brother of the protagonist, Sam Peel (Clarke).

He has a wife who wants him to give up his criminal lifestyle, if that is what this is. There's a gang of East European sadistic murderers who want him dead, or, at the very least, tortured to within an inch. They fit their roles to perfection, cold, merciless, pathological basket cases.

Sam falls into the honey trap which ruptures his marriage and then his mum is mothernapped and someone else is beaten up and then someone else disappears. You could have written the script on the back of Ray Winstone's betting slip.

It's all about revenge and it's all about power. Bad people have sex parties; good people have children. There are no rules to this kind of thing. Guns are made for shooting; lives are made for ending. And of course there are drugs and a nod towards The Departed as one of Sam's best friends at school is an undercover cop.

The critic writes in his notebook, "a lot of breaking furniture".

Is that all?

Reviewed on: 01 Sep 2016
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Brotherhood packshot
First there was Kidulthood then Adulthood now comes Noel Clarke's last installment of his personal Odyssey.
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