Starring: Glenn Salvage, Andy Prior, Kevin Akehurst, Adam Chapman, Adrian Foiadelli
In Hope City, Williams (Salvage) is a hitman who wants out of the business. Unfortunately his boss, Kincaid, isn’t too happy about it and has instructed his lieutenant, Dylan, to kill him after completing his current assignment. Williams barely manages to escape and goes to ground, plotting his revenge. At the same time, a promising kickboxer called Danny Kelso (Prior) is told to throw his next fight if he wants Kincaid to help his career – and God help him if he refuses...
Review:After the rather decent
Ten Dead Men
, I was intrigued enough to go and check out the previous Modern Life? Production, Left For Dead. And I have to say, I was rather glad I did.
Made for the same amount of money it took Kevin Smith to make Clerks (according to IMDB), Ross Boyask and producer Phil Hobden have put together a movie which is wall-to-wall action. There is nary a dull moment to be had.
Glenn Salvage proves to be a decent enough actor and has a whole host of cool moves. Andy Prior’s baby-face looks help sell his character’s naiveté but he looks great as a fighter both in and out of the ring – in fact I think he has a more cinematic fighting style of the two leads.
As with Ten Dead Men, it’s the villains of the piece that provide the most enjoyment and here they get a lot more screen time. Kevin Akehurst is excellent as Dylan, Kincaid’s right-hand man. There’s a hilarious moment when he thinks he’s captured Williams but it all goes wrong and he just goes mental. Adam Chapman has an intimidating deep voice which he uses to great effect as Kincaid. Adrian Foiadelli is also excellent as Taylor, the man sent to convince Kelso to throw his fight. He gets a number of good moments throughout the movie, especially his send-off of Kelso.
I only have two real complaints about the movie. Like Ten Dead Men, Left For Dead has an episodic structure, with caption cards interspersed throughout the running time. This is probably to help the continuity flow on a movie which was shot over a long period of time, but they do become a little annoying. The initial action scene, while boasting some cool moves, isn’t structured and its difficult to put anything into context until the scene’s final confrontation (a nice nod to Luc Besson’s Leon).
Left For Dead
should be compulsory viewing for anyone contemplating making a low budget movie because it demonstrates how talent, ingenuity and determination can overcome almost all obstacles. A great cast of screen-fighting talent and strong villains make this a very entertaining martial-arts flick melded with British gangster style.