Rise of the Footsoldier is a British crime film released on 7 September 2007. The third production from BAFTA Award-nominated director Julian Gilbey, it is based on the true story of the 1995 Rettendon murders and the autobiography of Carlton Leach, a football hooligan of the infamous Inter City Firm (ICF) who became a powerful figure of the English underworld.[3][4]

Main cast

Evaluation in film guides

TimeOut Film Guide (2011 edition) reviewer David Jenkinson describes Rise of the Footsoldier as "a repugnant gangland romp in which ruffians get tooled up with axe handles, baseball bats and Stanley knives then knock ten bells out of each other for two hours." After a one-sentence overview, the review concludes that "Leach is then unceremoniously swept aside as the film hastily attempts to give the Rettendon Range Rover murders a once-over in the scrappy second half."

In America, Videohound's Golden Movie Retriever also disliked it, throwing the film one bone (out of possible four) and dismissing it as "Brit crime flick, based on a true story, that has nothing going for it but violence". Indicating that "Carlton Leach goes from football hooligan in the 1980s to criminal muscle and gangster in the 1990s", the write-up ends with mention of "three murdered drug dealers who were found in rural Essex".

Similar films

The films Essex Boys (2000), Bonded by Blood (2010), The Fall of the Essex Boys (2013) and Essex Boys: Retribution (2013) are also based – to varying degrees – on the Rettendon murders.

A sequel, Rise of the Footsoldier: Part 2 (2015), was released in December 2015.[5] A prequel titled Rise of the Footsoldier 3 is set for release in 2017.