In telling the story of two of Britain’s most notorious criminals, the Kray twins, the combination of all the characters, dialogue, music and cinematography of 1960s London did an adequate job of keeping me engaged.
Besides Tom Hardy who is, shocker, not shocker, just brilliant in his task of portraying both Reginald (Reggie) and Ronald (Ronnie) Kray, another big draw for me was the delightful britishness of the humour in Legend.
Prior to this movie, my main experience of London’s east end gangster / criminal world is Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels (1998). The pace and rhythm of that movie is one of the best things about it. In comparison to Legend, granted the period in time is quite different, but I did find myself wanting for things to move along a tad quicker.
Each time the two brothers were on screen at the same time, those were the most engaging moments and not just because I was curious to see how well director Brian Helgeland handled the reality of Tom Hardy essentially ‘talking to himself.’
Ronnie and Reggie’s sibling bond and the dynamics of their relationship is the most interesting aspect of this story. We get to experience and witness this bond in Helgeland’s movie, but I’d have loved for more of the film to be dedicated to the story of the brothers, perhaps as young boys/ men. I found myself wanting a clearer picture of more of what it took to create the reality that became their lives. Without the look back, the story felt incomplete to me.
In my fantasy of this movie, I’d say, either split the story of the Kray twins into two films, or forget about the relationship between Reggie and Francis, It’s boring – and instead focus on the most important love affair instead, the one between the two brothers. After all, it is the thing that ultimately decided their fate.
I don’t think that Legend is a bad film. It just simply left me wanting more than I would have liked. Watch it for the Tom Hardy excellence.
Happy Film Loving 🙂