Rarely (if ever?) do documentaries produce sequels. But attempting to expand upon his original documentary about Manchester gangster Dominic Noonan, Donal MacIntyre has made a documentary-come-film to shed further light on the man and his family’s criminal empire.
A Very British Gangster 2 picks up shortly after Noonan’s release from prison, but provides nothing new — mostly rehashing events from the first film. MacIntyre attempts to add some cinematic flair to the subject matter, but this isn’t enough to justify dedicating another seventy-seven minutes to the man in question.
So what we have is a lot of talk from Noonan, about how his “boys” have his back, no matter what; how he doesn’t want his son to follow in his footsteps; how the police are bastards; etc. We know this already.
One thing particularly noticeable is that many of the scenes appear to have been staged, as well. There’s one involving Dominic arguing with his son’s mother and appearing to rip her door off the hinges. So, you’re telling me that happened and MacIntyre just happened to be there with his camera? Sorry, not convinced.
A film about Noonan’s anti-fascist, Irish republican brother would’ve warranted another/stand-alone film. Or further insight into the oppression within working-class communities; the lack of support for working people from the police; and what “normal” people think of Noonan as an alternative solution to their problems would’ve been much more interesting.