Director: Rachel Moriarty.
Starring: Killian Scott, Peter O’Meara, Nika McGuigan, Barry Keoghan. Ireland/UK. 1h 30m.
Harry Fox is a man who has it all, an amazing apartment, a cushy job, good looks and a fancy car, but his company goes bust and after a few angry phone calls from the bank he looks set to lose it all. But just in the nick of time a close friend, Vernon comes up with a bizarre but workable solution when he masterminds an insane game called Traders. Advertised on the deep web, the game rules are laid out. You take all your money and sell off all your property bag up the cash (in a green bag) write a suicide note, meet up with the other unknown “Trader” take several bus rides and go to a secluded location, trade phones dig a grave and fight to the death, the winner buries the loser, posts the suicide note and goes home with double his money. Sounds simple so what’s the catch?
A dank urban fairytale
The boy even manage to battle themselves although Harry doesn’t kill the overweight and blubbering Vernon, who’s never fought a day in his life, instead he takes his friend home and patches him up, suspecting that Vernon had his own debts to pay otherwise he’d not have challenged him, while trying to make his first million it seems that someone else has found a way to exploit the system, I mean who wouldn’t? This is Ireland after all fighting and crime are in the blood.
It’s an interesting film with a great concept, but it doesn’t really dig deep into it’s own mechanics and certainly doesn’t probe the pro’s and cons and it does become a bit repetitive before things get gritty. It cleverly incorporates the internet both by spreading the news on the deep web and when Harry is injured his often visits a survival youtube channel for advice, which is comically hosted by Tomo Davis from Plebs.
Thinking aside it’s a modern day Irish Fight Club (1999), there’s (un)healthy levels of fist fighting, murder and body disposal, an edge of romance, but luckily not enough to throw the viewer off course from the gratuitous violence and manly ass kicking. It has a very modern edge to it, but it was advertised as business men beating the shit out of each other BUT this is a free for all, it starts as an executive dream but soon hits the streets.
The budding directors have made a huge impact with their bloody macabre debut and hopefully things will grow as they mature, but this is an incredibly sound footing. The camera work is active and intuitive, the soundtrack carefully laced into each scene, it has a edge to it that you’d expect in a modern British film, a touch of Guy Ritchie maybe but overall it’s quite a stunning and well crafted film with lots of rewatchability and hopefully a sequel.
R – Fight Club (1999)
L – Fighting Flick, Irish Films, The Deep Web
Vs – Traders Vs Fight Club