Sweeney on the big screen

THERE’S nothing to compare to the hard edge that Ray Winstone brings to the roles he plays.  

I remember the first time he registered with me as an actor, in Gary Oldman’s debut as director, his searing portrayal of violent family life in the East End of London, Nil By Mouth in 1997.  

Winstone leapt off the screen as an abusive husband.  He continued to impress in such films as Tim Roth’s The War Zone (1999), Jonathan Glazer’s Sexy Beast (2000), Fred Schepisi’s Last Orders (2001) and even in our own The Proposition (2005) from director John Hillcoat.

Interesting that two of Britain’s top actors, Oldman and Roth, chose to cast him in their sole ventures as filmmakers.

The value of Winstone is the quiet menace he brings to the screen, which is why he perhaps should have thought twice about taking on the role of DI Jack Regan in The Sweeney.  

Regan is a bully, a foul-mouthed