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Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is a 1998 British crime comedy film written and directed by Guy Ritchie, produced by Matthew Vaughn and starring an ensemble cast featuring Jason Flemyng, Dexter Fletcher, Nick Moran, Jason Statham, Steven Mackintosh, Vinnie Jones, and Sting.

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels 2.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Guy Ritchie
Produced by
Written by Guy Ritchie
Narrated by Alan Ford
Music by
Cinematography Tim Maurice-Jones
Edited by Niven Howie
Distributed by PolyGram Filmed Entertainment
Release date
  • 28 August 1998 (1998-08-28)
Running time
106 minutes[1]
Country United Kingdom
Language English
  • £800,000
  • ($1.35 million)
Box office $28.1 million[2]

The story is a heist film involving a self-confident young card sharp who loses £500,000 to a powerful crime lord in a rigged game of three card brag. To pay off his debts, he and his friends decide to rob a small-time gang who happen to be operating out of the flat next door.

The film brought Ritchie international acclaim and introduced actors Jones, a former Wales international footballer, and Statham, a former diver, to worldwide audiences. Based on a $1.35 million budget, the film had a box office gross of over $28 million, making it a commercial success.

A television series, Lock, Stock..., followed in 2000, running for seven episodes including the pilot.



Long-time friends and small-time criminals Eddy, Tom, Soap, and Bacon put together £100,000 so that Eddy, a genius card sharp, can buy into one of "Hatchet" Harry Lonsdale's high-stakes three card brag games. The game is rigged however, and the friends end up massively indebted to Harry for £500,000. Harry then sends his debt collector Big Chris (who is often accompanied by his beloved son, Little Chris) to ensure that the debt is honored within a week.

Harry is also interested in a pair of expensive antique shotguns that are up for auction, and gets his enforcer Barry "the Baptist" to hire a couple of thieves, Gary and Dean, to steal them from a bankrupt lord. The two turn out to be highly incompetent and unwittingly sell the shotguns to Nick "the Greek", a local fence. After learning this, an enraged Barry threatens the two into getting the guns back. Eddy returns home one day and overhears his neighbours — a gang of robbers led by a brutal man called "Dog" — planning a heist on some cannabis growers loaded with cash and drugs. Eddy relays this information to the group, intending for them to rob the neighbours as they come back from their heist. In preparation for the robbery, Tom buys the antique shotguns from Nick the Greek.

The neighbours' heist gets under way; despite a gang member being killed by his own Bren Gun, and an incriminating encounter with a traffic warden, the job is a success and they return home with a duffel bag filled with money and a van loaded with bags of marijuana. Eddy and his friends ambush them as planned, and later return to stash their loot next door. They then have Nick fence the drugs to Rory Breaker, a gangster with a reputation for violence. Rory agrees to the deal, but later learns that the drugs were robbed from his own growers. Rory threatens Nick into giving him Eddy's address, and brings along one of the growers — Winston — to identify the robbers.

Eddy and his friends spend the night at Eddy's father's bar to celebrate. Meanwhile, Dog's crew accidentally learns that their neighbours are the ones that robbed them, and set up an ambush in Eddy's flat. Rory and his gang arrive instead and a shootout ensues, resulting in the deaths of all but Dog and Winston. Winston leaves with the drugs; Dog leaves with the two shotguns and the money but is waylaid by Big Chris, who knocks him out and takes everything. Gary and Dean, having learned who bought the shotguns and not knowing that Chris works for Harry, follows Chris to Harry's place. Chris delivers the money and guns to Harry, but when he returns to his car he finds Dog holding Little Chris at knife point, demanding the money be returned to him. Chris complies and starts the car. Meanwhile, Gary and Dean burst into Harry's office; starting a confrontation that ends up killing them both, and Harry and Barry as well.

Returning to see the carnage at their flat and their loot missing, Eddy and his friends head to Harry's, but when they discover Harry's corpse they decide to take the money for themselves. Before they are able to leave, Chris crashes into their car to disable Dog, and then brutally bludgeons him to death with his car door. He then takes the debt money back from the unconscious friends, but allows Tom to leave with the antique shotguns after a brief standoff in Harry's office.

The friends are arrested, but declared innocent of recent events after the traffic warden identifies Dog and his crew as the culprits. Back at the bar, they send Tom out to dispose of the only evidence connecting them to the case: the antique shotguns. Chris then arrives to give back the duffel bag; he has taken all the money for himself and his son, and the bag is empty except for a catalogue of antique weapons. After leafing through the catalogue, the friends learn that the shotguns are actually quite valuable, and quickly call Tom. The film ends with Tom's mobile phone, stuffed in his mouth, ringing as he hangs over the side of a bridge, preparing to drop the shotguns into the River Thames.



Soundtrack from the Motion Picture Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
Soundtrack album by various artists
Released 1998 (UK)
23 February 1999 (1999-02-23TUS)
Genre Rock
Brit pop
Length 62:54 (UK)
43:32 (US)
Label Island (UK)
Maverick (US)
Guy Ritchie film soundtracks chronology
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
Soundtrack reviews
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic       Link

The soundtrack to the film was released in 1998 in the United Kingdom by Island Records. Madonna's Maverick Records label released the soundtrack in the United States in 1999 but omitted nine tracks from the UK release.

  1. "Hundred Mile High City" by Ocean Colour Scene
  2. "It's a Deal, It's a Steal" by Tom, Nick & Ed*
  3. "The Boss" by James Brown
  4. "Truly, Madly, Deeply" by Skanga*
  5. "Hortifuckinculturist" – Winston
  6. "Police and Thieves" by Junior Murvin
  7. "18 With a Bullet" by Lewis Taylor & Carleen Anderson*
  8. "Spooky" by Dusty Springfield
  9. "The Game" by John Murphy & David A. Hughes*
  10. "Muppets" by Harry, Barry & Gary
  11. "Man Machine" by Robbie Williams*
  12. "Walk This Land" by E-Z Rollers
  13. "Blaspheming Barry" by Barry
  14. "I Wanna Be Your Dog" by The Stooges
  15. "It's Kosher" by Tom & Nick
  16. "Liar, Liar" by The Castaways*
  17. "I've Been Shot" by Plank & Dog
  18. "Why Did You Do It" by Stretch
  19. "Guns 4 show, knives for a pro" by Ed & Soap
  20. "Oh Girl" by Evil Superstars
  21. "If the Milk Turns Sour" by John Murphy & David A. Hughes (with Rory)*
  22. "Zorba the Greek" by John Murphy & David A. Hughes
  23. "I'll Kill Ya" by John Murphy & David A. Hughes (with Rory)*
  24. "The Payback" by James Brown
  25. "Fool's Gold" by The Stone Roses*
  26. "It's Been Emotional" by Big Chris
  27. "18 With a Bullet" by Pete Wingfield

* Track omitted from 1999 US release.

Release history
Region Date
United Kingdom 28 August 1998
United States 23 February 1999


The production of the film followed Guy Ritchie's single short film which preceded Lock, Stock. As stated in

Although it was Ritchie's first feature, his previous short film The Hard Case, was sufficiently impressive to secure interest not only from financial backers but also persuaded Sting to take the role of JD. "I'd seen Guy's short film and was excited by the pace and energy in it. The way in which he handles violence and action appealed to me. I don't like gratuitous violence. I think it's much more chilling when it's suggested rather than graphic." For Ritchie, getting exactly the right actor for each role was essential. "The casting took forever and we auditioned hundreds of people, but I was determined to hold out until we got the real McCoy." This led to employing several genuine ex-cons, who certainly invest the film with its menacing undertones. Ritchie also looked to the celebrity arena to secure the right cast such as Vinne Jones. "I didn't hesitate in casting Vinnie as I have the most incredible respect for his acting capabilities."[3]

A one-hour documentary of the production of the film was released featuring much of the cast along with Ritchie.[4]

Release and ReceptionEdit

Box officeEdit

The film was released on 28 August 1998 in the United Kingdom, and on 5 March 1999 in the United States. Its total gross in the US was $3,753,929.[5]

Critical receptionEdit

John Ferguson, writing for the Radio Times, called the film "the best British crime movie since The Long Good Friday".[6] The film has ratings of 76% on Rotten Tomatoes[7] and 66 on Metacritic.[8]


The film was nominated for a British Academy Film Award in 1998 for the outstanding British Film of the Year. In 2000, Ritchie won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Best Motion Picture Screenplay. In 2004, Total Film named it the 38th greatest British film of all time.

Director's cutEdit

Focus Features released the Locked n' Loaded Director's Cut in 2006. This version of the film contains more of each of the characters' backstories, and runs at a total time of 120 minutes.

See alsoEdit

  • Hyperlink cinema – the film style of using multiple inter-connected story lines


Further readingEdit

  • Catterall, Ali; Wells, Simon (2001). Your Face Here: British Cult Movies Since The Sixties. Fourth Estate. ISBN 0-00-714554-3. 

External linksEdit