Underrated: Legend (2015) Review

4/5* Shiv’s Show | Siobhan Divers

Dir: Brian Helgeland

131 mins

Starring: Tom Hardy, Emily Browning, David Thewlis, Duffy, Christopher Eccleston, Chazz Palminteri, Taron Egerton.

A masterful performance from Tom Hardy with incredible support from Emily Browning, Christopher Eccleston and Taron Egerton makes Legend a must-see film.

A retelling of the Kray twin’s story – notorious gangsters who ruled London’s underworld in the 1950s and 60s – crime thriller Legend combines violence with humour and the result is outstanding.

Hardy brings to life iconic London gangsters Ronnie and Reggie Kray in such a convincing and memorable way, its easy to forget it’s the same actor playing both roles – they may be twins but they are completely different people.

Opening with the Kray’s already ruling the East End, the film is narrated by Frances Shea (Emily Browning) – the sister of the Kray’s driver and love interest of Reggie.

Frances recounts how the Krays rose to power and how they held their influence over a number of years. Their wit and cheekiness is charming and it’s not hard to see how Reggie lands Frances.

Less than amused however is Detective Superintendent Leonard ‘Nipper’ Read (Christopher Eccleston) who is determined to take down the brothers.

The film’s casting is completed with key characters in the Krays story – Leslie Payne (David Thewlis) – the Krays’ business manager, Edward “Mad Teddy” Smith (Taron Egerton) – a psychopathic gay man who is believed to have had affairs with Ronnie and, Jack McVitie (Sam Spruell) – who played a key part in the Kray’s downfall.

With compelling characters, Legend is thrilling and exciting from the outset – a must see film for fans of the era, of the crime genre or of Tom Hardy as his performance is remarkable!

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