All is well until a gang of thugs, who were also responsible for a murder during the London riots, attacks Elsie. The attack results in Elsie miscarrying. Grief stricken, Tommy learns that they have been sentenced to jail and decides to get arrested so that he can enact his revenge, whatever the cost.
The choice to use the London riots of 2011 as the initial scene setter seems a little ill-judged so soon after events, and proves to be unnecessary to the over-all plot. Much more enjoyable is the action contained within the prison. It's quickly established that the young offenders institute is a place where violence and corruption rule. As well as seeing how Tommy will enact his revenge, there are also various sub-plots including a corrupt, drug-addled warden and a vague foray into a Muslim prayer group seeking to reform inmates. These sidelines distract from the enjoyment of the main story and expose notable weakness in Paul Van Carter's screenplay.
Scalpello's Offender is far from original when placed in the context of the British crime movie genre, despite its intriguing focus upon the recent London riots. However, featuring some enjoyable performances and an entertaining revenge plot, it still has just enough about it to keep audiences entertained.
Read our interview with stars of the film Joe Cole and Malachi Kirby here.