Writer: John Hodge (Screenplay)
Starring: Kerry Fox, Christopher Eccleston, Ewan McGregor, Ken Scott, Keith Allen, Colin McCredie, Victoria Mairn
Plot: Three friends discover their new flatmate dead but loaded with cash.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Forgotten Classic
Story: Shallow Grave starts when Juliet (Fox), David (Eccleston) and Alex (McGregor) are searching for a new flat mate in the centre of London, the friends have fun while interviewing potential candidates until Hugo (Allen) walks into their lives.
When the friends don’t see Hugo after he moves in they enter his room to find him dead but they also find a large suitcase of money. The friends decide to dispose of the body and keep the money for themselves but this only leads them to learn the true characters coming forward as they also find themselves being hunted down by the people the money actually belong too.
Shallow Grave is a character driven thriller that shows how all friendships could be pushed to the limits when it comes to money. This films shows us just how things can go even if it was just slightly too far to the extremes. I think the tension building through the film shows how the story continues to grow and you simple just don’t know where things will end up going. The negatives would be that we just don’t get enough time to learn where the money really came from or what happened to Hugo.
Kerry Fox: Juliet is the doctor of the friends who welcomes Hugo into the house and using her skills when it comes to how they can dispose of the body. She is a free spirit not involved with either of the two guys. Kerry is good in this leading role playing both sides of the situation well.
Christopher Eccleston: David comes off as the slightly stuck up while working in a tax office we get to see how his life is run by routine. When he wants to say no to the money he gets pulled around only to find himself having to do the dirty work which makes him more dangerous than the other two thought. Christopher shines as the guy you just don’t know about throughout the film.
Ewan McGregor: Alex seems to be the loud mouth flaky character of the three who always seem to just get by. He will also get the others in trouble but will stand with them to clean up the mess. Ewan is good and shows how he can play the both sides of the story well.
Support Cast: Shallow Grave has a supporting cast which all help with the final story but in the end we are only really follow the main three characters.
Director Review: Danny Boyle – Danny shows us just how capable of a director in this is debut in a feature film where he balances the three characters throughout the film.
Crime: Shallow Grave gives us the cover up of a crime which only leads to more as the battle between the friends continues.
Thriller: Shallow Grave does keep us on edge through the whole film as we wonder just what will be happening next.
Settings: Shallow Grave has most of the pivotal scenes within the flat showing just how all the characters will be tested through the film.
Special Effects: Shallow Grave has simple effects when needed but doesn’t turn to them for the sake of it.
Suggestion: Shallow Grave is one I do think people should be watching just to see where Boyle and the stars have come from. (Watch)
Best Part: The performances.
Worst Part: We don’t learn enough about where the money really came from.
Believability: The breakdown of the friendship could be real.
Chances of Tears: No
Chances of Sequel: No
Post Credits Scene: No
Oscar Chances: No
Budget: $2.5 Million
Runtime: 1 Hour 29 Minutes
Tagline: The award winning thriller that’ll bury you with laughs.
Trivia: Danny Boyle has stated that of the films he has directed, this is his father’s favorite, and that whenever a new film directed by Boyle junior is released (including Slumdog Millionaire (2008), which won the academy award both for best film and best director) and he asks Boyle senior’s opinion, his father’s review is always the same – “It was good, but not as good as ‘Shallow Grave’.”
Overall: A true classic with all the tension you could desire from Danny Boyle.