Easy Money (Snabba Cash) review

This movie preceded director Espinosa's first US foray Safe House. The Denzel Washington actioner was perfectly serviceable but no match for this smart Swedish thriller. It's a tough crime drama, but time is given to the three main protagonists so we become invested in their plight.

Kinnaman is JW, the gay student with keen intelligence on the stock market and finance, drawn into setting up a money laundering scheme with a bank on behalf of a drug cartel fronted by the Albanian mafia. He starts a relationship though with pretty Sophie (Henni) who tries to instil in him some moral fibre. The drugs come from the contacts of ex convict Jorge (Varela) who wants to make enough money for his sister and her child to live in comfort. He is initially the target of hardheaded hitman Mrado (Mrsic), who soon finds himself having to look after his sweet six-year-old daughter (Stojanov) while being double crossed by his employers.

The labyrinthine plotting unfolds with smooth precision as these three characters gradually become embroiled with each other in the violent criminal underworld. We get to see all sides of the Stockholm social strata - the country houses peopled with the upperclass money makers and businessmen as well as the the poor accommodation for students and drug dealers. Espinosa's direction is confidently economical in depicting the wide scope of the milieu - there's a welcome lack of sensationalism as the narrative unfolds. It's brutal at times but very compelling, and the performances are top notch. The first in a trilogy, I look forward to Parts 2 and 3 with eager anticipation. Easy Money delivers with surefooted style. Excellent.

Easy Money (Snabba Cash) at IMDb

Stuart O'Connor is the Managing Editor of Screenjabber, the movie review website he co-founded with Neil Davey far too many years ago. He likes all genres, as long as the film is good (although he does enjoy the occasional bad "guilty pleasure"), and drinks way too much coffee.

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