War On Everyone is the new film from John Michael McDonagh, director of The Guard and Calvary. McDonagh is a director who is known for his dark comedies and he brings that sensibility to the bad cop genre.
The film stars Michael Peña and Alexander Skarsgård as partners Bob and Terry who constantly blackmail criminals whilst abusing their position as cops. They end up stumbling across a robbery orchestrated by James Mangan (Theo James) who is a far more ruthless and dangerous criminal than they are used to dealing with. The story moves along a good pace, never boring the viewer, and at just over an hour and a half it doesn’t overstay it’s welcome.
Skarsgård is nearly unrecognisable from his past performances, adopting the big lumbering mannerisms of Terry brilliantly. Peña brings the quick wit and quippy dialogue that he showed in Ant-Man. They both wear the flaws of their characters out on their sleeves, and yet still win you over to liking and caring about them. These two are also supported by Tessa Thompson, who was so fantastic in Creed, who strikes up a relationship with Terry. James also provides an intimidating antagonist for the leads.
Most importantly McDonagh deliver another hilarious script, with intelligent and darkly satirical humour mixed so perfectly with slapstick. If you’re a fan of his previous efforts then you can expect a similar tone to The Guard, and that’s no bad thing. I’m hoping that War On Everyone can find the level of mainstream success to propel McDonagh to the mainstream, because in his three films to date, he’s delivered on every one of them.