James McAvoy’s 2013 British film productions started with Welcome to The Punch, then setting firm footing with Danny Boyle’s splendid Trance and comes full circle with FILTH. Of the lot, this was the one movie that I so desperately wanted to see. Based on a novel by Irvin Welsh, who previously gave us the magnificent Trainspotting. While Welcome to The Punch came off as mediocre and Trance amazing, I still rooted for the FILTH. Despite its imminent comparisons with Bad Lieutenant, there was something enticing and beckoning about FILTH.
Packed with relentless abuses, sex and copious amount drugs, Filth has every right to be named so. It wastes no time in introducing us to Bruce Robertson a bigoted, philandering, junkie cop who would stop at nothing to secure a promotion in an attempt to win his wife and daughter back. This is one helluva messed up guy we’re talking about here, driven by the obsession for the promotion he constantly manipulates and maltreats his colleagues to the point it becomes impossible to root for this guy, yet you invest a lot in this character. There were scenes where he often broke The Fourth Wall addressing the audience, and it made me feel more involved with Bruce; it might be a reason why although we watch him manipulate, we still feel empathy for him. Flawlessly portrayed by James McAvoy, its his charms that makes us do so in the character, McAvoy steals it, every possible way he can and its no wonder he’s won British Independent Film Award for Best Actor.
Along with McAvoy, is a stellar cast which includes his colleagues, Imogen Poots, Jamie Bell, his best friend Eddie Marsan whom he bullies yet is true to Bruce and his psychologist played by Jim Broadbent. Jamie Bell and Eddie Marsan had a good share of screentime and does makes the most of it, but the gorgeous Imogen Poots did leave her presence felt with her albeit her comparably less time.
The music is one of the finest points of Filth, having wonderful licensed tracks that goes perfectly in sync with the visuals. I was instantly in love with Scissor Sisters FILTHY which was featured in the previews. Clint Mansell once again creates magic with his compositions from start to end. Tracks, DS Bruce Robertson, Reeperbahn Madness stands out in particular.
FILTH, most definitely aint for everybody and it is depraved, sick and offensive. Underneath its cosmetic layers of depravity and filth lies a more subtle story and message that few people can comprehend, and ofcourse the ending’s a bit anticlimactic, but whatever be, I loved it to the core. Nonetheless it stands to be among the brilliant black comedies in recent times and could arguably end up in the best films of 2013 list. Be a lil filthy and just go with the flow. Until then “Same Rules Apply!”