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The Krays have for years epitomised the glamour of the underworld of London through the 1960's. Despite living their lives on the wrong side of the law they have maintained through out their 30+ years in prison and even now in death a huge cult status.

The Final Word delves into the lives of the Ronnie and Reggie and provides some fascinating new insights into what was already an almost legendary story.  The film was aired on terrestrial television in 2000 but was only half the length of this disc, which has an impressive 2-hour running time.  Many people involved in the life of the Krays have been interviewed including a number of the people who actually "went down" with the Krays if you pardon the pun.  The modern media liked to portray the twins as heroes and almost as a vigilante group cleaning the scum of society from the East End. If you subscribe to this theory then this disc may open your eyes somewhat. Many of their 'colleagues' clearly state in this documentary that the Krays were evil and brutal men and in some ways cowardly.  Indeed, the brothers dragged 8 other men down with them for their crimes - some of whom had very limited involvement - when a guilty plea would have seen these men walk away.

Krays, The: The Final Word
What makes this documentary unique is that Reggie Kray was interviewed during the last weeks of his life and he makes some telling statements.  One thing that is immediately apparent is the lack of remorse and the way he often talks of his crimes in the third person as if trying to disassociate himself from blame.

Video
The picture is in anamorphic widescreen, which is always a good thing, and given that that the film was made for television it stands up very well to closer scrutiny.  Allowances have to be made for some of the archive footage and the conditions in which the interviews were conducted and taking this into account you can't realistically expect to get much better.  
There are several revelations on this disc that I certainly hadn't heard before and I suspect even the most ardent Kray follower will be surprised at some of the stories recalled by the various interviewees.

Krays, The: The Final Word
Audio
The sound on this DVD is functional but not a lot more. It's presented in Dolby stereo but as it is mostly talking doesn't suffer from this fact.  One fault is the constant hiss during the sections where Reggie Kray himself is being interviewed and you may find this gets a bit distracting. In fact, now I've mentioned it you'll probably find it more so.

Extras
Being a documentary this disc doesn't really lend itself to having a plethora of extras and what is there is very short.  There are short biographies of all the people interviewed throughout the documentary, which gives you background information on how and why they knew the twins. This information is very useful and it would be a good idea to watch these before the main feature, as it will give you an idea of who's who as they come up during the film.

Krays, The: The Final Word
The second extra is called 'The Kray Manor' and consists of a scrolling map of the East End and as the screen follows the map information on the life of the Krays is shown.  This extra would have been better presented in an interactive fashion but is a useful way of following the story around the area - you could actually use it as a guide should you fancy going on a Kray Tour around the area. Finally, is a short extra which consists of the Order of Service from Reg's funeral.

Overall
If you have anything more than a passing interest in the Krays then you simply have to buy this disc.  Even those who saw the TV documentary last year will no doubt benefit from the extra hour of information and if you believed everything the tabloids had printed since their convictions then be prepared to have your eyes opened.


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