Britain is a bleak place right now, the powers that be leading us to a cost of living crisis throwing many into despair and uncertainty over their futures, particularly the younger generation. Jamie Childs makes his feature film directorial debut with Jackdaw, a film that captures the desperation many face in this country today in quite impressive fashion.

Jack (Jackson-Cohen) is a former motocross champion and army veteran who has fallen on hard times. He accepts a job to collect a package in the North Sea but this decision could have big ramifications for his family.
Jamie Childs shows some truly promising signs as a filmmaker here in his debut, Jackdaw offering a slick and gritty crime thriller for the most part. Some of the motorbike chase sequences are captured really quite superbly and the film starts well, getting straight into proceedings without much baggage. It's a shame that the film, which only runs for just over ninety-minutes, runs out of steam by the end, feeling almost as if Childs wasn't too sure just how to bring the film to a suitable conclusion.

It's the fallout from some narrative/character choices that leave the film falling a little flat from around the midway point. It becomes frustrating to see as it could have been heading for a home run without them. The score brings with it electronic beats that adds another layer of cool to proceedings but again choices were made where it would just become too loud and overbearing at times. These really are tiny details that just bring the film down for me.
Coming to the performances, this is where Jackdaw shines. Oliver Jackson-Cohen brings such a brooding nature to Jack's presence, a man of few words but a look that will unsettle you. This is very much his film and he holds it together with a magnetic performance. He's joined by a supporting cast who don't really get enough time to make a mark on the film in any way, save for Thomas Turgoose as a raver Jack encounters on his journey of revenge. Turgoose came to fame through This Is England as a young boy and he can do a role like this here in his sleep. Would love to see him appear in more films to be honest because his presence here just adds quality.

While a valiant debut effort from Jamie Childs, Jackdaw finds itself lacking of a compelling final act after a good initial setup. As British crime thrillers go, it's fine but had potential to be great.

Verdict: ★★★


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