Another year, another film concerned with football violence and how rock-solid West Ham’s Inter City Firm was during the peak time for controversy in the 1980s. Yawn.
The story is based on the life of real-life thug/reformed writer Cass Pennant (played here by Nonso Anozie), a Jamaican baby who was adopted by elderly white parents and grew up to lead one of football’s most notorious terrace firms.
We do develop a fair degree of sympathy for the main character — a victim of racial oppression in his early childhood — in the early stages of the film; such sympathy, though, is cut short when we notice he achieves his main form of acceptance via the pointless rucks that occur on football match days in his adult years.
Aside from Linda Bassett’s half-decent portrayal of the doting mum, the performances are mediocre at best; the dull fight scenes and clumsy pacing that go on top of the overly-sympathetic tone don’t do Cass any favours, either. This feels like a tired film in an overcrowded genre.