James McAvoy in Filth (2013)

McAvoy Shines in Filth

Bruce Robertson (James McAvoy) is a dirty cop, a bigoted, corrupt official who is more than happy to break the rules to satisfy his own perverse desires. And breaking the rules is exactly what he plans to do when he goes after a promotion, playing off his colleagues against each other and sleeping with wives along the way. But as Robertson creates a web of lies as he plays each colleague against each other his own life starts to spiral out of control as his drug abuse gets out of hands and he starts hallucinating.

Yet again I find myself watching a movie and having a Murtaugh moment as I feel like I'm getting too old for this sh!t. Maybe if I was 20 years younger the excess in "Filth" would be right up my street as we basically watch the sadistic Bruce lie, screw, cheat and do whatever he likes to put one over on his competition for promotion, and that includes photocopying his cock. But it didn't entertain me as we watch him reap what he sowed as his life starts to crumble in a mess of his own making.

But whilst "Filth", quite an apt title, didn't entertain me the performance of James McAvoy was brilliant. Now for me McAvoy has never seemed to have his niche, not really a romantic leading man whilst not having the charisma to play an action man but here the layers of character work so well in his favour and he gets to showcase his ability to play extreme characters rich in depth. And whilst he is surrounded by a whole host of familiar British actors if it wasn't for James McAvoy committing 100% to the character the movie wouldn't have worked.

What this all boils down to is that "Filth" didn't entertain me and to be frank found the story of excess and repercussions more a movie of style over substance. But the acting of James McAvoy lifted it with a committed performance which impressed when little else did.