“Jack’s Return Home”
A London gangster returns to his home town for the funeral of his brother. Determined to learn the true circumstances of his death, he ruthlessly pursues his vengeance amongst the local underworld.
This landmark British thriller has a hallowed reputation as one of the best crime films of all time. Hard-boiled, ice cold and gritty in such a certain way that only the British seem to understand – if Samuel Beckett wrote a gangster film, it might come out something like Get Carter. Here the “swinging 60s” is transposed over the slow-burning existential terror of working class Newcastle, and exposed as a absolute dead end. At the centre of this abject bleakness is the iconic performance by Michael Caine – Jack Carter is played with such chilly authority that he is the complete epitome of ironic cool. Capable of wry and darkly humourous observations, and ocassional moments of reflection that give us subtle hints of something deeper, Caine’s Carter is nonetheless as comforting as a shard of plate glass on a frosty night. Director Mike Hodges‘s stylish but naturalistic approach, aided by Roy Budd’s minimalist soundtrack, slowly builds a sure feel for the underbelly of society. Get Carter is impossible to imitate or to under rate.