Uncut Gems (2019)

As a UK script consultant, UK Script editor  and script writer for hire, I think it’s a bit of a shame that Uncut Gems isn’t been lauded with awards in Oscar, Golden Globes and BAFTA season. The reason why this film (and it is very much a film) isn’t taking home ‘film’ awards is too convoluted to go into here but the idea that this isn’t a ‘film’ is ridiculous and totally outdated in the streaming age (and that is why I think it’s been snubbed).

Uncut Gems is a much better  ‘film’ than The Irishman, Joker, and 1917 put together and it would give Once Upon a Time in Hollywood a run for its money in the acting stakes.

And it is a film that’s all about acting (Sandler is magnificent) and all about writing too. The script is fast, relentless and doesn’t stop for even a second. The writing reminds me of Paddy Chayefsky, or something Robert Towne could do in his prime (like the remarkable The Last Detail). It even has a sense of the now tainted but (undoubtedly talented )James Toback at his best.

The film will stay with you for days afterwards, and prompt conversation and debate. The depiction of the diamond district in New York is spot on, and only a visit there to the view the merchandise will prepare you for the non-stop pitching, shouting, talk, laughs and confusion. Myself and my wife once spent a couple of hours there and managed to escape exhausted, having bought nothing despite everybody’s best efforts to sell us something – anything!

It’s a great film, and a pure old fashioned ‘New York’ movie, the type of which we haven’t seen for years . The soundtrack also deserves additional special attention, the right mix of good taste and bad.

Hurry to see it, one of the best ‘films’ you’ll see anywhere this year, wherever you watch it, and you might watch it on your phone or your tablet – doesn’t mean it’s not a film.

Matthew Cooper has been a script writer for hire, UK Script editor  and script doctor for over 20 years. He’s written for most of the UK soaps, including writing award winning episodes of Emmerdale, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Family Affairs and has been BAFTA shortlisted and Royal Television Society nominated as a script writer. He’s also a leading UK script consultant. You can find some of his broadcast credits on the IMDb. You can get in touch with Matthew on matcoop23@yahoo.co.uk or hire him on Peopleperhour

His directorial debut, the rubber reality horror thriller Markham will be released in 2020.