44 Inch Chest is a 2009 British crime drama film directed by Malcolm Venville in his directorial debut. The film stars Ray Winstone, Ian McShane, John Hurt, Tom Wilkinson, Stephen Dillane and Joanne Whalley. The film was released on 19 October 2009.

It was written by Louis Mellis and David Scinto, who both previously wrote Sexy Beast, and produced by Richard Brown and Steve Golin (Babel, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), and cinematography by Daniel Landin, the score is a collaboration between Angelo Badalamenti and Massive Attack.


Colin Diamond (Ray Winstone) is a successful car salesman who, after a discovering his wife Liz is having an affair, has an emotional breakdown. His friends convince him to kidnap his wife's lover and then encourage him to torture and kill him.

Diamond's partners in crime are suave homosexual gambler Meredith (Ian McShane), crotchety and bigoted Old Man Peanut (John Hurt), the down to earth Archie (Tom Wilkinson) and the combustible Mal (Stephen Dillane), who by turns encourage Colin's lust for revenge and sympathise with his situation, and conspire to emotionally and mentally torture Liz's new boyfriend, Loverboy, a "Frog" waiter, first by locking him in a cupboard and threatening him, and tying him up and subjecting him to humiliating verbal and physical assault.

Parts of the story occur in flashback, with Colin discovering Liz's infidelity and the after effects of it, which then affect the present, in which he tries to come to terms with the shame and torment that this brings to him. Parts of the story also appear to happen inside Colin's mind, with him trying to reconcile with himself, using his friends as representations of his own turmoil, and his resolving of the situation.


  • Ray Winstone as Colin Diamond
  • Ian McShane as Meredith
  • John Hurt as Old Man Peanut
  • Tom Wilkinson as Archie
  • Stephen Dillane as Mal
  • Joanne Whalley as Liz Diamond
  • Melvil Poupaud as Loverboy
  • Steven Berkoff as Tippi Gordon
  • Edna Doré as Archie’s Mother
  • Andy de la Tour as Biggy Walpole
  • Derek Lea as Bumface
  • Ramon Christian as Boy on Sofa


It is set and filmed in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, and London, England on 26 May and 13 July 2008.


44 Inch Chest has received mixed to negative reviews. Review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes reports that 41% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 78 reviews, with an average score of 5.2/10. The Daily Telegraph gave the film 3/5 stars, calling the film "A plum actors' piece which both gains and loses points by soberly stalling its own plot." Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian was less enthusiastic, giving the film 2/5 saying "The film talks the talk â€" in fact, it talks and talks and talks the talk. But the walk isn't happening."

Home media

On 10 May 2010, DVD was released in Region 2 in the United Kingdom, it was distributed by Momentum Pictures.


External links

  • Official website
  • 44 Inch Chest at AllMovie
  • 44 Inch Chest at Box Office Mojo
  • 44 Inch Chest at the Internet Movie Database
  • 44 Inch Chest at metacritic
  • 44 Inch Chest at Rotten Tomatoes
  • BBC Film Network â€" Malcolm Venville interview

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