Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Complicity - film review

Complicity is a film made as long ago as 2000; it didn't make many waves at the time of its release, despite the fact that it was based on a book by Iain Banks, but it still seems fresh and refreshingly different. In fact, it's only the snippets of technology - clunky mobile phones and computers in particular -that give the film's age away.

Cameron Colley is a young Scottish journalist whose radical political views tend to infuse everything he writes, to the detriment of his career. Cameron is played by Jonny Lee Miller - who is, I learned, the grandson of Bernard Lee, who played M in the early Bond movies - and he has a long-running affair with Yvonne, the wife of a friend; she's played by Keeley Hawes, whose performance is, as usual, compelling.

Cameron receives a series of mysterious phone tip-offs from a source who is disguising his voice. His attention is drawn to a series of gruesome deaths. There seems to be some form of link between the deaths and arms sales to Iraq, but before long, the police become involved, and Cameron himself becomes the prime suspect of the dogged detective. The cop is played by Brian Cox, and other notable cast members include Bill Paterson and Alex Norton, who was Burke in the later series of Taggart.

Never mind complicity, the storyline is complicated, and it's not always easy to understand what is going on. As the plot continues to thicken, it becomes apparent that that the murders may have some personal connection to Cameron, and his erratic past. The soundtrack is pretty good, and there is some excellent photography of superb Scottish scenery. Not the most plausible story, to be honest, but a very watchable movie. I'm surprised it's not better known.


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