So yesterday I watched Marvin’s Room. Because of that, I decided that today I needed something with a bit more…guts. So, despite have recently put up a review of something from my horror lists, I felt like I needed something along those lines today. Thus it is that I watched Shallow Grave, Danny Boyle’s first full-length theatrical release. This is not a horror movie by any legitimate measure. What it is is a very violent neo-noir and one of the first films in the more modern breed of ultraviolent British crime films. Shallow Grave lacks the fun of a film like Snatch, opting instead for intrigue, mistrust, and pure evil.
The plot is ridiculously simple. Three roommates are looking for a fourth to share their apartment. The three are young professionals, all with decent careers and prospects. Alex Law (Ewan McGregor) works for an Edinburgh newspaper as a reporter. Juliet Miller (Kerry Fox) is a doctor. David Stephens (Christopher Eccleston) is a chartered accountant. The search for a new roommate is more of a chance for them to make fun of people and put them through a terrible interview process, but eventually they settle on Hugo (Keith Allen), who claims to be working on a novel.