The Long Good Friday (1982) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Long Good Friday1982

The Long Good Friday (1982)



Critic Consensus: Bob Hoskins commands a deviously sinister performance in The Long Good Friday -- a gangster flick with ferocious intelligence, tight plotting and razor-edged thrills.

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Movie Info

John Mackenzie's masterfully directed British crime drama features a star-making performance by Bob Hoskins as Harold Shand, a successful London gangster whose world falls apart over the course of one weekend. Shand controls the London docks and is planning a big real estate deal, financed by money from the American mob and given the okay by the London organization. His world is sweet -- he lives in a fancy penthouse, he owns a yacht, and has a sensitive and intelligent mistress. But suddenly a bomb explodes inside his Rolls Royce, another bomb destroys a pub he owns, and a third is found inside his casino. Shand can't understand who would suddenly want him dead, particularly over the Easter weekend, when representatives from the American mafia are coming into town to discuss investing in Shands's real estate project.

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Bob Hoskins
as Harold Shand
Helen Mirren
as Victoria
Dave King
as Parky
Pierce Brosnan
as 1st Irishman
Kevin McNally
as Irish Youth
Daragh O'Malley
as 2nd Irishman
Bill Moody
as Boston
Trevor Laird
as Boy under car
Ryan Michael
as Waiter Ricardo
James Ottaway
as Commissionaire
Roy Alon
as Captain Death
Tony Rohr
as O'Flaherty
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Critic Reviews for The Long Good Friday

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (10)

The simple, almost Shakespearean moral is that nefarious deeds breed a climate of contempt, and that any success will always be tainted.

June 23, 2015 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Sheer brilliance.

June 21, 2015 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Hoskins' bullish, black-comic Napoleonism makes this movie: pugnacious, sentimental, a cockney Cagney.

June 18, 2015 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Has a shaky, peculiarly British charm that still makes it irresistible.

June 15, 2015 | Rating: 4 | Full Review…

Although The Long Good Friday is firmly rooted in a very different era -- early 1980s Britain is another country entirely -- the film still feels fresh and uncompromisingly tough.

May 7, 2015 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

In many respects a conventional thriller set in London's underworld, The Long Good Friday is much more densely plotted and intelligently scripted than most such yarns.

August 19, 2008 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Long Good Friday


The Long Good Friday is Hoskins' break out performance and it's no surprise as to why. He inhabits the role of Harold Shand with such passion that we are completely swept along with him. Harold Shand is a gangster and businessman. As he approaches making a lucrative deal with some Americans, a number of his crew are taken out via stabbings and bombs. He and his gang must find the culprits before the Americans are scared off. It's a race against time but with no real heroes. We feel for the character of Shand but at no point are asked to excuse or support him. The score is beautiful, in an old electronic kind of way, it does set the scene and builds up exciting moments. The sound design is also often exaggerated but in a way that it brings added and important emphasis to certain scenes. Director Mackenzie also likes to get experimental at times, but only when it really serves the plot, such as the upside down meat truck scene. It's a great film that warns against greed and corruption, but is also littered with memorable dialogue.

Luke Baldock
Luke Baldock

Super Reviewer

Well deserving of its many accolades, Friday is one cheery holiday weekend with Brit crimelord Bob Hoskins (in a juggernaut performance worthy of all the gangster greats) as his world crumbles all around him. Helen Mirren lends able support (one of the best I've seen her in) and Pierce Brosnan also makes a brief appearance. Great writing showcases this 1981 thrill ride.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Bob Hoskins, Helen Mirren and a kick-ass ending.

Randy Tippy
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

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