By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist February 1, 2013 at 3:43PM
"Hot Fuzz" aside, the history of the British cop/action film is not a glorious one. Indeed, it's hard to think of a truly successful picture that plays it straight, especially with recent disappointments like "Blitz" and "The Sweeney" fresh in the memory. But there's one sneaking up that we've had high hopes for for some time.
"Welcome To The Punch" marks the sophomore feature from director Eran Creevy, whose 2008 flick "Shifty" marked one of the more impressive British debuts of the last few years. And it won him a much bigger canvas to play with the second time around, with Ridley Scott producing his action-thriller, inspired by films like "Heat" and "The Last Boy Scout." And he's assembled an impressive cast, many of whom are featured in five new images from the film recently released, including James McAvoy, Mark Strong, Andrea Riseborough, Peter Mullan, Johnny Harris and Ruth Sheen, with David Morrissey, Daniel Mays, Elyes Gabrel and Daniel Kaluuya also among those who'll crop up in the film.
The moody look that Creevy (who also appears in the last of the image) has set up is firmly in evidence, and it's a reminder of how enticing that cast is. We were a touch disappointed by the trailer, but we've still got high hopes that the film could prove more interesting than the marketing suggested. Check out the synopsis below -- UK audiences will be able to check out the film on March 15th, with a U.S. date following on March 27th before it hits VOD on March 30th.
The second feature from acclaimed British director and filmmaker Eran Creevy, WELCOME TO THE PUNCH is the story of two arch-nemeses: detective Max Lewinsky (James McAvoy; X-MEN: FIRST CLASS, WANTED) and master criminal Jacob Sternwood (Mark Strong; SHERLOCK HOLMES, ZERO DARK THIRTY, THE GUARD). When Sternwood escaped three years ago after a daring robbery, Max was left emotionally and physically scarred. But after Sternwood’s son turns up in a hospital due to a failed heist, he’s forced to return to London – giving Max his second chance to get the one criminal who got away. Yet as Max delves deeper into the case he uncovers a vast conspiracy. Featuring rising star Andrea Riseborough (W.E., SHADOW DANCER) and Peter Mullan (TYRANNOSAUR, WAR HORSE), the film was shot in the gleaming streets of London’s rejuvenated East End and the banking center of Canary Wharf.