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"Yardie" has the right look, the right sound and the right moves to play with the bigger boys of its genre; like its young, scrappy but naive hero, however, there's not quite enough power behind its posturing.
As it stands, Yardie seldom amounts to anything more than a collection of vaguely related scenes, simultaneously both too muddled and too straightforward to have any resonance beyond the moment at hand.
Throughout the messy experience of "Yardie," [Idris] Elba's interest in storytelling gets ahead of his lacking visual instincts. Though I'm curious to see what story he tells next, Elba proves to not yet have an original voice behind the camera.