A really great debut film showing how well action can be done on a budget. Achieves the Mean Streets feat of imbuing real humanity into the characters while portraying all as complete losers. Lots of nice little directorial touches alongside the mostly straightforward presentation, as well as a completely engaging performance by Bodnia.
I wasn't expecting much as I find that most movies about guys who push drugs, and then find themselves owing loads of money, are all the same. However this movie is very raw with excellent dialogue (albeit in Danish with subtitles) and some first-rate acting bringing the shady characters alive. I personally really liked the ending.
Not bad at all for a debut movie, but the plot about the gritty grotty world of dopey drug pushers adds little to the sum of human knowledge. An early and convincing outing for Kim Bodnia (Frank); how ironic that he would later make a name for himself as dishevelled cop Martin Rohde in Scando-noir The Bridge.
It is rare in cinema to find such a realistic accurate and precise portrayal of traits and qualities of those crawling in the underworld. Refn devotes this film to splendid microscopic character studies- these lowlifes show a blatant emotional detatchment and a complete lack of ethical code, they are prisoners of their own realities, nihilistic, disenfranchised and often intellectually challenged... Cont
It's unusual to show that behind the violence there is another violence or an extreme pressure you almost feel yourself watching the movie. The Yugoslavians are really great in their polite conversations with Frank only occasionally bursting with rage expressed using their native language without translation, so you comprehend pretty much the same the main character does.