The Debt Collector

Watch The Debt Collector

"Some debts can never be paid."
  • 1999
  • 1 hr 49 min
  • 6.6  (1,182)

The 1999 British crime comedy-drama film, The Debt Collector, is a brilliant portrayal of Billy Connolly’s talent for playing complex characters. The movie is directed by Anthony Neilson and is known for its bold and gritty narrative, superb direction, and brilliant performances by the actors that go beyond the expected in the genre.

The movie centers around the character of William, a man who has been entrusted with a special talent: to collect debts owed by criminals to the underworld. These debts typically come from heists, gambling, and other shady dealings. William and his partner, named Jim (played by Ken Stott), are in charge of collecting from a particularly shady character named Wincey (played by Annette Crosbie), who seems to always be one step ahead of them.

Throughout the movie, William encounters various obstacles, including rival debt collectors and other nefarious characters, and must navigate a complex network of criminals to accomplish his goal. In the course of his mission, William also meets a young woman named Maggie (played by Francesca Annis), who has been caught up in the criminal world and is struggling to get out.

What sets The Debt Collector apart from other crime dramas and comedies is its depth of character development. The movie avoids the trope of simplifying characters into basic archetypes and instead presents them as multidimensional individuals with their own motivations and aspirations. The relationship between William and Jim is particularly nuanced and interesting to watch, as they constantly navigate their own loyalty to their boss with their own desires.

Another standout quality of The Debt Collector is its stylish and visually striking cinematography which seamlessly blends gritty realism with vibrant, bold colors. The lighting and imagery of the film evokes some of the best aspects of neo-noir filmmaking, creating a brooding atmosphere that underpins the tension of the narrative.

Overall, The Debt Collector is a unique and powerful entry into the world of crime dramas and comedies. It’s a film that will keep you hooked from beginning to end, with its intelligent writing and complex characters. The performances by Connolly, Stott, and Annis are all standout performances that demonstrate deep emotional intelligence and commitment to their craft. Even over two decades later, it still stands out as an exceptional film that transcends the limitations of its genre.

The Debt Collector
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  • Release Date
  • Runtime
    1 hr 49 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (1,182)