Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Peter Medak: The Krays, Let Him Have It, The Ruling Class

Today's release of The Krays on Netflix Watch Instantly inspired this short list of films by the British director, Peter Medak.  A few other films by Medak are also streaming, including his episode for the Masters of Horror series, The Washingonians.

The Krays (Peter Medak, UK, 1990, 120 minutes)
Netflix: Director Peter Medak's BAFTA-nominated drama depicts the real-life story of twins Reggie (Martin Kemp) and Ronald Kray (Gary Kemp), two notoriously vicious gangsters who would ultimately lead the criminal underworld of 1960s London. Raised in the city's working-class East End, the twins -- feared by everyone around them -- gained both power and respect, though eventually the brothers' horrific brutality turned even their own against them. Netflix link.

Let Him Have It (Peter Medak, 1991, UK, 115 minutes)
Netflix: When the mentally challenged Derek Bentley (Christopher Eccleston) befriends thug Chris Craig (Paul Reynolds) -- who lives his life as if it were a gangster film -- both their destinies are forever changed. Acclaimed director Peter Medak (Romeo Is Bleeding) helms this emotionally charged social commentary based on actual events, set in 1950s England. Eileen Atkins and Tom Courtenay co-star.  Netflix link.

Actually, I included The Ruling Class in an entry back in February about films from the 1970s that I should have seen by now.  Well, I still haven't seen it, and it is still streaming.

The Ruling Class (Peter Medak, UK, 1972, 154 minutes)
Netflix: After a House of Lords member dies during a bizarre cross-dressing ritual, his nutty son, Jack (Peter O'Toole) -- who thinks he's Jesus Christ -- is bequeathed the family estate. As a result, his family members must scheme to steal back Jack's inheritance. This 1972 cult comedy, in all its murder and mayhem glory, takes a swipe at every swath of class-obsessed British society. Arthur Lowe shines as Jack's lucky servant, Tucker.  Netflix link.


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