Snatch’ is bloody good comedy

“Kuasehfgaiurgh” says Brad Pitt’s character in Guy Ritchie’s “Snatch.”

The response he receives along with the film are exactly right, but in a good way – ‘What?’ like ” What? I can’t believe this movie is so top-notch in a year when there isn’t supposed to be anything good out besides what films Steven Soderbergh has made (“Traffic,” “Erin Brockovich”). Or “what, a gangster crime movie can also be a comedy?”

“Snatch” is a rock-em sock-em roller coaster ride that leaves its viewers jumping the turnstiles to cut back in line after their first glimpse.

The film has every element that a comedic gangster flick should. There are oversized get-away drivers, fixed fights, bizarre deaths, men missing fingers, Russians missing eyes, one huge diamond and bad guys who feed people to pigs. It is also full of cartoonish characters with names like Franky Four-Fingers, Bullet Tooth Tony and Doug the Head giving it all the more comedic gangster feel.

The film centers around two stories in the seedy side of London, one is about an 82-karat diamond stolen from some Jewish jewelers and the blokes who want it: Dennis Farina, Benicio Del Toro, Vinnie Jones and Lenny James among others. The other focuses on a struggling boxing promoter, a vicious bookie and an unintelligible gypsy-leading, bare-knuckled boxer named Mickey, played by Brad Pitt. There are American, Russian and British gangsters, killers, petty thieves and hit-men, all intertwined in the two stories, all with their own motives to get involved. For most it is greed, but there is also survival and revenge.

Just like Richie’s 1998 sleeper hit “Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels,” the story in

“Snatch” has many, many (often too many) groups of characters working against each other in a roundabout, unpredictable way that often lacks stability between cuts, but some how still makes sense in the end. In fact, the film was exceptionally edited and it isn’t hard to follow, but it doesn’t exactly give you a map in the ‘traditional’ film continuity sense.

Because of this, critics could argue that Guy Richie has his own unique style of film making, if they weren’t always busy calling him the next Quentin Tarantino; which he is not by both positive and negative comparisons.

Elements that make “Snatch” a great film aside from Richie’s story telling (or editing) are its outstanding performances from an army of actors from both sides of the Atlantic.

Brad Pitt is hilarious as the brash, short-tempered boxer. Some of the funniest scenes in the film involve him and his gypsy consiglieri and their trailer park lifestyles. His jibberery accent, which in the film is described as not being thick Irish or Scottish but Piker, makes his character memorable.

Ex-Soccer player turned movie brute, Vinnie Jones, stands out as a tough as nails hitman hired to find the diamond. Benicio Del Toro shines in all of his scenes as a well-dressed jewel thief with a penchant for gambling, Franky Four-Fingers. But those are only a few of the many that stand out that make “Snatch” well done.

Another element that adds to the film making it even better is the superb soundtrack. All of the songs fit well with the visuals, in many cases adding to the already mentioned excellent editing sequences.’Snatch’ is a film that should not be missed.