The Original “Get Carter” Gets Rough

An English gangster, Jack Carter (Michael Caine), seeks to learn the truth about his brother’s death by investigating a rival mob.

Long before there was the British film Croupier, there was the British film Get Carter (1971), directed with flair by Mike Hodges.  Both films are harsh and violent, the Hodges concoction being rather uglier because it is mildly sexist.  I say this not because three female characters in the movie are plainly corrupt, but due to its suggestion that all that is needed to pacify a woman outraged by shady behavior in her home is an offer of copulation.

Caine is disturbingly spot-on, cooly potent.  Get Carter‘s acting is excellent.  Though it’s a movie hard to love, it is easy to respect in many of its particulars.  It even seems to tell us that if you’re a gangster, somehow you’re going to get it in the neck.

 

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