The Birthday Cake: What Is In The Box?

4.5/5

Written by Luke Barnes

This film is the best gangster/crime film I have seen in a while. The pacing of this film is terrific, and it takes you on one hell of a ride. There are scenes in this film where I was on the edge of my seat, I know that is a cliché, but for once it accurately describes the situation.

I enjoyed how this film places so much emphasis on its titular cake, always making sure to feature it in every sequence throughout the film. Moreover, the final reveal involving the cake makes the film, or at least it did for me, it was so perfectly built up to and it truly delivers.

Furthermore, the acting is strong across the board with every actor bringing their A game to this project and being memorable as a result. I would be hard pressed to pick a favourite moment from the film as the whole of it is so good and each actor really has their own moment to shine.

My one criticism of this film would be that it could have better used Ewan McGregor, as he is barely in the film though when he does appear he steals the scene.  I would have liked the film to further explore the relationship between his character and Gio as clearly he is somewhat of a mentor to him, but we don’t really see this happen on-screen and can only imply it as an explanation.

Overall, perhaps the best gangster film of the year.

Pros.

The cast is terrific

The cake payoff

The tension

The pacing

Cons.

Under-using McGregor

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