When criminal Jacob Sternwood’s (Mark Strong) son is shot during a heist gone wrong, Sternwood is forced into returning to London where policeman Max Lewinsky (James McAvoy) is determined to catch him at any lengths necessary. However, there is more that meets the eye as Max stumbles upon a possible conspiracy.
Welcome to the Punch is by no means a realistic police procedure movie as police procedure frequently goes out the window; a notable highlight is when Max tears through a hospital carrying a gun and wrestling innocent people, possibly paying a visit to their sick grandmother, to the floor. The problem here is events are just not believable, willing suspension of disbelief is required, however that said it would be a boring film if we were to watch a police officer fill out mountains of paperwork because some teenager stole a Mars bar. Anyway, moving on, the performances are all superb (unsurprisingly considering the cast list) but the story is only occasionally gripping and let down by too many somewhat implausible twists. The film also lacks any interesting characters as many are far too thinly sketched out to be interesting. Welcome to the Punch is aesthetically well made, superbly shot and efficiently edited but it is one of those action movies where many of characters seem to have the accuracy of a blind wombat before suddenly learning how to operate a weapon when the time calls for it.