Frank (Richard Coyle) is a drug dealer having a really bad week. After naively believing he had a sure thing on his hands, he finds himself in debt to his supplier, Milo (Zlatko BuriÄ‡, who also played this role in the original). Nothing goes according to plan, and soon he’s beating up his best friend, betraying his girlfriend, running from Milo’s henchmen and trying to save his sorry life, or perhaps more importantly, his humanity.
Director Luis Prieto a very glossy remake of the Danish original by Nicolas Winding Refn. The pace is tight, the music is thumping (a driving score by techno-icons Orbital really helps the atmosphere) and the grimy underworld of small time drug pushers is made to look even dirtier with a generous dose of glitter and neon. An amazing performance by Coyle anchors the film, and model-turned-actress Agyness Deyn gives it her all as his stripper girlfriend. BuriÄ‡ is as brilliant as Milo as he was in the Danish films. The only performance that’s somewhat lacking is that of Frank’s snivelling sidekick, played by Bronson Webb. That’s not because Webb does a bad job. It’s simply because it’s damn hard to be compared to the ever-brilliant Mads Mikkelsen, who originated the role.
Whether you’re a fan of the original or just in the market for a good thriller, Pusher delivers on some great action and a few good laughs along the way.
Is Pusher Essential TIFF Viewing?
This is the kind of glitzy film full of edgy, cool, up & coming stars that’s fun to see at a festival. The film will definitely benefit from being seen in an enthusiastic and engaged packed house. Plus, Nicolas Winding Refn produced it, so if you’re worried it’ll suffer from being a remake, don’t worry. It’s got his stamp of approval.
Pusher Screening Times
- Friday September 7, 2012 at 9:00 pm at The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema
- Sunday September 9, 2012 at 12:00 pm at Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 10