The jury may still be out on whether Sir Ben Kingsley is sexy.
But the character he plays in the 2000 British crime thriller Sexy Beast (see poster below) is certainly guilty of beastly behavior.
Don Logan is an implacable, remorseless and malevolent force of nature. And that is the way Sir Ben plays him. The result is such a convincing piece of cinematic villainy that Mr. Kingsley won an Academy Award nomination in the Best Supporting Actor category (as well as numerous other nominations.)
The nominal star of the film is British tough guy Ray Winstone, playing a retired safecracker named Gary “Gal” Dove. Gal has been living the good life in Spain with his wife, Deedee, played by Amanda Redman (you’ll recognize her immediately if you’ve seen BBC-TV’s New Tricks) until Logan appears on the scene, determined to lure him back to London for “one last big job.” (Ian McShane plays a ruthless London crimelord.)
With its wire taut suspense, uniformly gripping performances and an ingeniously edited underwater robbery sequence, it’s hard to believe this lean and mean Brit noir marks the feature film debuts of director Jonathan Glazer and screenwriters Louis Mellis and David Scinto.