“Watching A Very British Gangster, the award winning documentary film which opens here on July 18, you have to wonder if director Donal MacIntyre has a bit of a death wish. After all he's been consorting with men who make Al Pacino and Robert DiNiro's [sic] famous screen characters look like sweethearts.
“'I first met Dominic Noonan, the head of the crime family, in Britain's high security Belmarsh Crown Court,' MacIntyre told the Irish Voice. 'He told me, “Everybody I know wants to kill you. My brother was asked to whack you – I can see the job isn't done.” It's a chat-up line you'll remember. It led me on an unforgettable path.'"
As per O'Doherty's article, Noonan – who is actually Irish, not British (but the film is set in Manchester) – legally changed his name to “the aristocratic sounding” Lattlay Fottfoy, “an acronym for the family motto: 'Look after those that look after you, fuck off those that fuck off you.'"
Ah, lest I forget…
O'Doherty's article is called “The Gay Gangster.” And here's why:
“Halfway through the new film we learn that the mysterious, heavyset father of two is in fact gay, and surprisingly enough this unexpected information only serves to make him more intimidating. There are still some people who think gay men can never be tough guys, after all; here in America the Mafia usually whacks any leader who's discovered to be gay.
“But across the sea in Britain the hardest nut in the Manchester criminal underworld is an openly gay Irish man. So clearly someone needs to upgrade their idea of what a gay person looks like.”
Those who would like to learn more about that much talked about “queer sensibility” should probably take a look at A Very British Gangster, which opens on July 18 at Cinema Village Theater, 22 East 12th Street, in New York City, and at the Culver Plaza in Los Angeles.