In Legend, Tom Hardy gets a second chance to make a first impression on audiences. While he was the title character in the recent blockbuster Mad Max, Charlize Theron kind of stole the show. This time around, he’s back with a vengeance, playing not one, but two main characters.
Legend is based on Ronnie and Reggie Kray, twin crime lords running London’s underworld in the early 60s. Ronnie is glasses wearing, paunchy and flamboyantly gay, along with being mentally unstable. On the flip, Reggie is the level headed, business minded twin in a troubled marriage. The movie starts off with them getting a blank check to indulge in criminal enterprises, after they blackmail a high powered member of parliament, who gets busted in a gay orgy. Sounds cool, right?
Yeah, it all kind of falls apart after that. The rest of the movie unfolds pretty much the way you’d expect from your standard gangster flick.
Tom Hardy was amazing in this, playing twin brothers in a way that makes them characters in and of themselves. You genuinely do forget these twins are being played by the same person, which is an extraordinary feat both from Hardy, and from the people in makeup and wardrobe.
The problems here come from the actual storytelling itself, which is a bit thin. Aside from the unique premise of twin brothers, it’s a bit paint by numbers as fast as crime movies go, with two brothers doing horrible things, while a frustrated police department fights to stop them.
Off screen narration from Emily Browning seems to be done with shades of Goodfella’s, but instead, turns into cringe worthy clichés that are used to plug up holes in the screenplay. The storyline itself is really nothing special, with the twins going through the standard clichés of being hometown heroes and criminal celebrities, while at the same time, being monsters behind closed doors.
It’s a shame, because the real life story of the Kray twins left a lot of room to have fun. It was a clever movie that could have taken a more humorous twist in order to differentiate itself from the masses of other gangster movies out there. Instead, it takes a unique plot and twists it right into the mundane.
All in all, it’s a decent watch. The acting is fantastic, as are the costumes for the ‘duo’. It’s a stylish gangster movie that is plenty satisfying. The problem is, it’s satisfying in a way that fast food is satisfying. Sure, it’s enjoyable, sometimes you even crave it, but it’s nothing special.
This is a standard gangster movie that could have been more. Instead, they stuck with the formulaic plotline, despite having lots of real life material to choose from. I’m not saying it’s bad. I’m just saying it could have been better.
I will say it’s worth the watch, if you get a chance to see it. It’s not one of those British based movies where the accents are indecipherable, so if that usually distracts you, it won’t here. Instead, it’s a reliably exciting gangster flick, with some incredible acting by Tom Hardy. Watching him seamlessly play both characters easily makes this movie worth seeing.
WE GAVE IT: 4 Stars – Watch the Official Trailer and Official Movie Poster below!