Small Time Gangster - Series 1 DVD Review - www.impulsegamer.com -
Small Time Gangster - Series 1
Reviewed by
Simon Black
on
Small Time Gangster - Series 1 DVD Review A shameless Underbelly rip-off with worse acting and direction, the series posits itself as a gritty exploration of the bogan mafia subculture, but is ultimately far too derivative to ever maintain much in the way of resonance or appeal. 
Rating:
1.5

Feature 3.5
Video 6.5
Audio 6.0
Special Features   0.0
Total 3.0
Distributor: Universal
Running Time: 76 Minutes
Reviewer: Simon Black
Classification
: MA15+

3.0


Small Time Gangster - Series 1

Sometimes you stumble across a review on IMDb that so neatly encapsulates a particular series that it makes further commentary redundant.  Take this pithy, incisive little summation of Small Time Gangster, a largely overlooked 8-part drama series produced in Australia for Movie Extra:  

‘The cast of leads are giving everything they've got. They have to; there's so little in the script and/or direction. Sometimes there's too much. Cut! Don't drag that story point on so much! Don't hold on Steve Le Marquand's muggy reaction for so long! Get on with it..audiences are not stupid. There's too little actual story, or characterisation. There's too much of the obvious and not enough for us to wonder about. When it's not predictable, it's trying to shock, and isn't succeeding - it's so derivative, and self-conscious; and when you're expecting proper action, punches are pulled, and there's no satisfactory payoff. Good crime action needs great characters, rigorous storytelling, a decent budget and a gutsy, experienced hand at the helm. This looks like it could be a good series, but it's cheap copycat almost good enough; set in the daggy Aussie suburbs, like all those other shows. Geoff Morell is director-proof..he's been around long enough to know where the camera is and what he needs to do; Steve Le Marquand has potential, but is not leading man material, and is poorly directed; Gia Carides is poorly written and directed. This looks like the rehearsal, not the finished product; it's either very lazily or very hastily produced. The real loser here is the audience.’ 

I doff my cap to the pseudonymous author, and couldn’t have put it better myself.  Though a well enough intentioned cash-in on Australia’s current obsession with dramatised criminality, Small Time Gangster marks something of a misfire for the cable TV giant.  A shameless Underbelly rip-off with worse acting and direction, the series posits itself as a gritty exploration of the bogan mafia subculture, but is ultimately far too derivative to ever maintain much in the way of resonance or appeal. 

Audio & Video

The two-channel audio is a fairly listless affair, though as the sparse score mostly borders on the generic this doesn’t represent too much of a loss.  More worrisomely the 16:9 transfer is curiously dark in places, the camerawork amateurish and the editing choppy throughout. 

Special Features

Making Of Featurette (6 mins)

Cast and Crew Interviews (11 mins)

On the Set Featurette (5 mins) 






 
 



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