DVD Review - Shifty
|Daniel Mays (left)|
and Riz Ahmed in "Shifty"
His co-star here though is British actor Daniel Mays who plays Chris, an old friend who perhaps used to do drugs with Shifty. Chris comes to visit and finds Shifty living with his older Muslim brother, Rez, played by Nitin Ganatra (EastEnders). Shifty is shunned by his parents, most likely due to his drug deals. Shifty secretly stashes drugs in his brother's house and spends the whole day with Chris as he goes around selling crack cocaine to various people. Most of the deals are played for laughs, except for one involving a guy named Trevor, played by Jay Simpson. Trevor loses his job and is desperate for drugs, so he stalks Shifty, which is all meant to be a bit terrifying.
During one drug deal, we see a poster for the film 24 Hour Party People, a context clue for the fact that this movie is only a day in Shifty's life. Some films have been able to reveal a lot about a character depicting only one day of his or her life. Creevy's narrative reveals the bare minimum, but I would argue far from enough. An unspoken truth about Chris is deliberately held from us but I felt like we learned more about Trevor and his wife than we did about Shifty.
It's one of the most reoccurring decisions that characters in movies and literature have to make. It's the decision of whether to stay where you are or go to some place different, some place far away. Chris presents Shifty with that choice. Because of a few wrinkles that Creevy introduces, one option for Shifty might also be death. Creevy does a good job of building up that tension, but everything wraps up almost too conveniently. It seemed that way perhaps because I didn't care about the antagonists or felt all that threatened by them.
Three Stars out of Five.
Not Rated But Recommended for Mature Audiences.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 27 mins.