Legend [2015] ★★★

Legend-Poster-Tom-Hardy-900x1333A fact based story about the Kray brothers, two of the most notorious criminals in British history, starring Tom Hardy in a double performance sounds like Oscar bait. It isn’t. Yet “Legend” pulls the magician’s trick of distraction, offering enough solid entertainment value—with good use of locations, charismatic actors, and moments of shocking violence—to divert attention from its faults. For some people, that may be enough. Others may leave the theater wondering if things could have been better. Indeed, the story is uneven at times, and the movie goes on for way too long. But this is Hardy’s show all the way, and he’s quite mesmerizing.  He plays identical twin gangsters Reggie and Ronnie Kray, two very different brothers who built an organised crime empire in the East End of London during the 1960’s. It’s a classic outlaw tale, and you can feel it straining for a greatness that stays out of reach. Frustrating? At times, yes. But you forgive the shortcomings for the hardcore power of Tom Hardy’s electrifying performance. He’s easily one of the best actors on the planet.

Rating: 3/4

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